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Chapter 40; A history of Caricatures and Political Cartoons: History in its context

Table of Contents:

Introduction: The birth of Caricature

The history of Caricature, as part of a discipline in modern graphic design, may be traced back to the cultures of ancient Egypt, Greek and Rome and in the middle ages to Leonardo da Vinci's attempts to comprehend the concept of ideal beauty, by analyzing "the epitome of grotesque".

An Egyptian funeral boat

An Unfortunate Egyptian Soul

Caricatures are designed to oversimplify and exaggerate each subject's distinctive features, while still maintaining a recognizable likeness, in order to convey a visual message. According to Thomas Wright, a message has been conveyed to us from the distance of the ages by an Egyptian image in which a small boat with provisions that runs into the back of a larger funeral boat, upsetting the tables of cakes and other supplies. Thus this scene has the characteristics of a caricature. Wright, provides other Egyptian examples in which animals are employed in occupations usually reserved for humans which appear to be humorous , and he discusses examples of the ancient Greeks who were especially partial to representations of monsters, frequently using their images in their ornaments and works of arts.

The Egyptian God Typhoon

A Greek Gorgon

The Roman Sannio, from an engraving in the "Differetatio de Larvis Scenicis" by the Italian antiquary Ficoroni, who copied it from an engraved gem. He wears the Foccus or low shoe peculiar to the comic actors.

In particular, Greeks adapted the figure of the Egyptian god Typhoon to represent their Gorgon, as the above images show the Greek Gorgon was a rather close emulation of Typhoon. The image of Typhoon with its broad, coarse, and frightful face, lolling out his large tongue , appeared frequently on the Egyptian monuments. According, to Pliny in his "Natural History" among the pictures exhibited in the Forum at Rome there was one in which a Gaul was represented, "trusting out his tongue in avert unbecoming manner". Perhaps by using a Gorgon-type caricaturization, Romans were trying to exhibit their displeasure with Gauls. The Roman popular character Sannio, or buffoon, whose name is derived from a similar Greek character and who was employed in performing burlesque dances, making grimaces, and in other acts calculated to excite the mirth of the spectators, was another example of these ancient caricatures.

An artist studio in Pompeii

The Oldest drawing in British Museum, 1320 AD. Two demons tossing a monk headlong into a river.

Luther Inspired by Satan

In the Middle Ages religious anxieties were mixed with carnivals, festivals and enjoyment of the ludicrous. A manuscript from this time provides an example of two demons playfully tripping a monk and throwing him into a river. According to James Parton, "Reformation began with laughter, which church itself nourished and sanctioned ... upon edifices erected before the year 1000 there are few traces of the devil, and upon of those of much earlier date none at all; but from eleventh century he begins to play an important role". Artists competed with each other to give the devil the most hideous looks, and as time passed he looked more and more ridiculous. However, Luther spoke of the devil very seriously, as he thought that devils are present everywhere and in every action. People laughed at clergy, "the clergy, self-indulgent" in the words of Parton "preached self denial; practicing vice, they exaggerated human guilt. " Parton writes " among the curiosities which Luther himself brought from Rome in 1510, was a caricature suggested by the Ship of Fools, showing how the Pope had fooled the whole world with his superstitious and idolatries. ... Luther himself was a caricaturist ... The famous pamphlet of caricatures published in 1521 by Luther's friend and follower, Lucas Cranach, contains pictures that we could easily believe Luther himself suggested."

The Pope Tossed into Hell, Lucas Cranach, 1521

Pythagoras with musical devices. In Franchino Gaffurio, Theorica musice (Milan: Filippo Mantegazza for G.P. da Lomazzo, 1492)

America, Jan Galle after Joannes Stradanus (Jan Van der Straet), ca. 1580, from Nova repetra. In seculum diuersarum imaginaum speculatiuarum a varijis viris doctis adinuentarum, atq[ue] insignibus pictoribus ac culptoribus delineatarum...

Bibliotheca Publica in Leiden, In Johannes van Meurs, Athenac Batave, Sive, De urbe Leidensi, Academia, virisque claris ... (Leiden: Apud A. Cloucquium et Elsevirios, 1625)

The Padua anatomy theater designed by Hieronymus Fabricius, 1595. In Giacomo Filippo Tomasini, Gymnasium Patavinum (Udine: Nicolaus Schirattus, 1654)

A coffeehouse in London. In E. Ward, The Fourth part of Vulgus Britanicus; or, British Hudibras (London: James Woodward and John Morphew, 1710), frontispiece.

Between 1490 and 1495 Leonardo da Vinci (1452- 1519) developed his habit of recording his studies in meticulously illustrated notebooks. His work covered four main themes: painting, architecture, the elements of mechanics, and human anatomy. It appears that as much as he was interested in the human anatomy, through his sketches of various facial characteristics he was also interested in understanding of the human emotions and the impact of the ravages of time on the battered faces of various characters. These sketches which are collected into various codices and manuscripts, are indeed real precursors to modern caricatures.

Over time, as Werner Hoffman, in his Caricature from Leonardo to Picasso. (New York: Crown Publishers, 1957) argues artist deviated from Leonardo's approach to the human figure to develop a more exaggerated appearance of their subject. The “principles of form established in part by Leonardo had become so ingrained into the method of portraiture that artists like Agostino and Annibale Carracci rebelled against them. Intended to be lighthearted satires, their caricatures were, in essence, ‘counter-art.”

Study of Aesthetics in Five Rugged Heads, Leonardo da Vinci c. 1495

The parable of the blind, Pieter Bruegel the Elder, 1568

Pieter Bruegel the Elder (1520?-1569), who was from Flanders introduced his imaginative symbolism mixed with a subtle sarcasm in his paintings of various biblical parables and other metaphors, such as the Parables of Blinds, in which a blind is leading the others. His composition, and exaggerations of various human sensitivities are truly stunning and anticipates the best today's political cartoons.

The Drunken Silenus ("The Tazza Farnese", ca. 1597–1600

The cartoon like engraved frontispiece of the most significant book in the history of science, Galileo’s Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, Ptolemaic and Copernican, which resulted in Galileo’s censure and imprisonment by the Inquisition in 1633. The controversy arose over his proof of the Copernican cosmology, which placed the sun, not the Earth, at the center of the solar system. It depicts three great students of astronomy in dialogue: from left to right, Aristotle (384–322 BCE), Ptolemy (90–168 CE), and Nicholas Copernicus (1473–1543). Ptolemy holds an armillary sphere with the Earth at its center, while Copernicus grasps a heliocentric model of the solar system.

By the end of the 17th century, Annibale Carracci had raised the status of the caricature up to a high art discipline. His exaggerated visual narratives were later followed by many caricaturists of the 18th century.

Annibale Carracci, Sheet of caricatures, c.1595, British Museum

Annibale Carracci, Various Works

According to seventeenth century sources, the inventor of caricature as an independent art form was, the Bolognese history painter, Annibale Carracci. Mosini recorded Annibale's 'theory' of caricature as being the ultimate antithesis of beauty: 'una bella... perfetta deformità.' Like beauty in art, Annibale held, caricature was based on selection and synthesis. The artist was to devise it, in a playful spirit like that of Nature, whenever She offered him suitable models. The point was to offer an impression of the original which was more striking than a portrait.

Political Cartoons

Ideally, political cartoonists challenge political demagoguery, criticize societal injustices, and push public discourse towards enlightenment. They can highlight general instances of political corruption and inspire the community to try to understand their roles and responsibilities as conscious citizens. Through satire and irony, political cartoonists have the ability to unravel the complexities and speak the truth to power. Although in reality, some cartoonists do the exact opposite, as their masters assign them to do so. Society owes cartoonists the freedoms they need to fulfill their important duty.

In political cartoons the artist reduces the intriguing conceptual complexity of historical events, within a cultural context, into a stark but simple imagery accompanied by a witty and sarcastic statement. When this image is carefully analyzed, it leads to discovery of a number of important historical, social, economical, political, and cultural facts that offer authentic and accurate insights into the various cultural biases, human right issues, public anxieties, democratic wishes, and other features of a particular age. They shed light on enigmatic causes of historical events and describe the trajectory of a civilization's journey through time towards achieving humanistic ideals. Since the early eighteenth century, political cartoons have opened a sharp visual communication window into the past. The political cartoon is always informed by an event and speaks to a specific perspective towards that event. Thus to fully comprehend a cartoon, one needs to be well-read about both the event and its impacts on various perspectives.

The key to the caricature is an exaggeration of those aspect of a narrative that the artist wants to highlight. The personage of a tyrant, a charlatan politician or a corrupt clergyman in the hands of an artist turns to a revealing caricature that no amount of censorship can cover up. In this regard political cartoons have become a unique visual communication device since the 17th century, providing political editorials and socio-cultural commentaries. The main aim of this visual communication is to shape public opinion by using a verity of artistic, cultural, and psychological techniques, including resorting to nationalism, symbolism, hyperbolic suggestions, labeling, analogy, and irony. But, most often, they use sarcastic metaphors, satirical comparisons, and over the top description of reality to simplify complex political events so that the general public can comprehend their significance, from a particular perspective.

Perhaps the first political cartoonist was the Dutch artist Romeyn de Hooghe (1645-1708), who at the service of William of Orange, later King William III of England, repeatedly caricatured James II and Louis XIV, sometimes using pseudonyms on his most audacious images. He painted, engraved, sculpted, designed medals, enameled, taught drawing school, and bought and sold art as a dealer, but above all he was a graphic designer who etched allegories and mythological scenes, portraits, caricatures, political satires, historical subjects, landscapes, topographical views, battle scenes, genre scenes, title pages, and book illustrations.

Louis XIV as Apollo led by Madame de Maintenon, Romeyn de Hooghe, etching from 1701
Political cartoons played a significant role in the French Revolution and later on during the Napoleonic era. Revolutionaries used cartoons to highlight the lavish lifestyle of Marie Antoinette, often depicting her in obscene and unflattering situations. Under the censorship of Louis XIV of France, the caricaturists could not depict the sacred person of the king. However, the opponents of the Sun King, who were constantly at war with him, in coalitions that generally grouped the United Provinces, England, and the Hapsburgs; resorted also to political cartoons as a potent weapon. In this cartoon the king's image is not distorted or deformed. The caricature style of depicting an enormous head on a small body was not yet in fashion, however, it is rather clear that it is the staging of the event that is supposed to communicate with the viewer. The Sun King is represented as a sad, gloomy, and pathetic sun. His private life and his many mistresses are the subject of ridicule. Here the young Madame de Montespan, who was the most celebrated maîtresse en titre of King Louis XIV, is especially jeered for her bizarre relationship with a middle aged king who is depicted preying on Madame de Maintenon. The eclipse of 1706 in this regard provides a relevant backdrop to the sarcastic message. This celestial phenomenon is foretelling the imminent demise of the Sun King.

One of the earliest political cartoons was that of Robert Walpole, considered as the first British prime minister (1720 to 1742), who was represented by his exposed rear end. The cartoon did not show his face, because everybody knew you had to kiss his bottom if you wanted a highly paid government job. Walpole's attempts to arrest cartoonists only heightened interest in this medium. Bowing to the inevitable, he commissioned more flattering cartoons in an attempt to outflank his rivals. ”

From the French Revolution until the Great War: A Narrative of History in Cartoons

The farmer crushed by "Taille, Impots et Corvee"; by tithe, taxation and statute-labour. Coloured engraving.

The Third Estate, the clergy and the nobility shouldering the national debt. French Revolution. Engraving; 1789.

Marie-Antoinette  was cruelly lampooned throughout her  life in France. She was an Austrian Princess,who at age 15 married the Crown Prince of France in 1770. She and husband Louis XVI were still teenagers when they ascended the throne in 1774.

This anonymous cartoon from around 1791 blames the unfortunate queen for her alleged infidelity, the scandal provoked by her alleged greed in the affaire du collier or the necklace affair, the doomed flight to Varennes and counter-revolutionary intrigue. The image depicts her carrying the Dauphin, her eldest son, and Louis XVI, followed by her daughter Madame Royale and the King’s aunt Madame Elisabeth, leaping to safety from the Tuileries. The royal couple are both holding the broken scepter and are encouraged by the King’s brother, Comte de Provence (left), holding a purse full of money. Beneath are references to the Queen’s alleged sins.

The affaire du collier which was the trigger point for the French Revolution was started when jewelers Böhmer and Bassenge nearly went broke creating a necklace that they presumed King Lo­uis XV would buy for his mistress Madame du Barry. But the king died before he could purchase it and the jewelers hope that the new king, Louis XVI, might agree to buy the necklace for Marie Antoinette was dashed when Marie Antoinette discouraged Louis from purchasing it. Then a desperate, heavy-indebted Comtesse de Lamotte told cardinal Rétaux de Villette that the queen desperately wanted the diamond necklace but that she didn't want to ask Louis for it. Comtesse and her lover, forged letters in Marie Antoinette's hand and send them to the Cardinal, who was disliked by Marie Antoinette, asking him to buy the necklace, and Lamotte slyly suggested that if Cardinal de Rohan could find a way to procure it for her, his good reputation would be restored at court.

At last, the cardinal wrangled the diamonds from Böhmer and Bassenge on credit. The jewelers presented the necklace to the queen's footman for delivery -- only the footman was Comtesse's lover Rétaux in disguise. He seized the necklace and headed to London.­ When his first payment was due, Cardinal de Rohan couldn't cough up the amount. The jewelers demanded money from Marie Antoinette, who had no knowledge of the necklace. By then, the necklace had been sold. A furious Louis had the cardinal arrested; later, he was acquitted of all charges and exiled. The scheming mastermind Lamotte was imprisoned but broke free and took up residence in England. There, she spread propaganda about the queen.

Luis looks at the empty chests and asks “Where is the tax money?“ The financial minister, Necker, looks on and says “The money was there last time I looked." The nobles and clergy are sneaking out the door carrying sacks of money.

Necker’s ability to manage the deficit was tested by France’s involvement in the American Revolution from 1778 onwards, which would cost the nation more than 2 billion livres. He managed to fund the war effort but, it was through borrowing at rates of high interest, rather than by raising state taxes or revenue. By 1781 disaster was looming as the nation was approaching bankruptcy. Necker produced a document that was stunning in its deceit: the Compte Rendu du Roi (loosely translated, the ‘king’s balance sheet’) was a statement of the nation’s financial situation. However the Compte Rendu suggested there was actually a fiscal surplus, not a substantial debt. The publication of these glowing numbers in the Compte Rendu earned Necker hero-status amongst the people; he was hailed as an economic miracle-worker, despite being no such thing. The document concealed the disastrous level of debt and would make subsequent attempts at taxation reform more difficult than they would ordinarily have been. Thus the Compte Rendu du Roi was a catalyst for revolution: it was not a problematic event itself but it nevertheless contributed to the crises of the late 1780s. The opposition of the leading minister, Jean-Frédéric Phelypeaux, comte de Maurepas, and the hostility of the queen, Marie-Antoinette, forced Necker to resign on May 19, 1781.

"The Awakening of the Third Estate," an aristocrat and clergyman are horrified to see a man casting off the shackles of his class.

The hierarchical society of France was distinguished by her three estates: the clergy, the nobility, and commoners.

The first estate, the clergy, occupied a position of conspicuous importance in France. Though only .5 percent of the population, the clergy controlled about 15 percent of French lands. They performed many essential public functions—running schools, keeping records of vital statistics, and dispensing relief to the poor. The French church, however, was a house divided. Taxpayers hated the tithe levied by the church, even though the full 10 percent implied by the word tithe was seldom demanded. They also complained about the church’s exemption from taxation. While the peasants remained moderately faithful Catholics and regarded the village priest, if not the bishop, with esteem and affection, the bourgeoisie increasingly accepted the anticlerical views of the philosopher.

Like the higher clergy, the wealthy nobles of the Old Regime, the second estate, were increasingly unpopular. Although less than 2 percent of the population, they held about 20 percent of the land. They had virtual exemption from taxation and monopolized army commissions and appointments to high ecclesiastical office.

Confiscation of Churches Lands

The French Catholic Church, known as the Gallican Church, recognised the authority of the pope as head of the Roman Catholic Church but had negotiated certain liberties that privileged the authority of the French monarch, giving it a distinct national identity characterised by considerable autonomy. France’s population of 28 million was almost entirely Catholic, with full membership of the state denied to Protestant and Jewish minorities.

The Church’s revenue in 1789 was estimated at an immense – and possibly exaggerated – 150 million livres. It owned around six per cent of land throughout France, and its abbeys, churches, monasteries and convents, as well as the schools, hospitals and other institutions it operated, formed a visible reminder of the Church’s dominance in French society. The Church was also permitted to collect the tithe, worth a nominal one-tenth of agricultural production, and was exempt from direct taxation on its earnings. This prosperity caused considerable discontent, best illustrated in the cahiers de doléances, or ‘statements of grievances’, sent from throughout the kingdom to be discussed at the meeting of the Estates-General in May 1789. Calls for the reform or abolition of the tithe and for the limitation of Church property were joined by complaints from parish priests who, excluded from the wealth bestowed upon the upper echelons of the Church hierarchy, often struggled to get by.

On 4 August 1789, when the remains of France’s feudal past were abolished in a night of sweeping reforms, the clergy agreed to give up the tithe and allow the state to take over its funding. The Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, adopted on 26 August, made no recognition of the special position of the Catholic Church. With all authority located henceforth within the nation, the Church now found itself open – and vulnerable – to further reform. On 2 November 1789, France’s new National Assembly, known as the Constituent Assembly, passed a decree that placed all Church property ‘at the disposition of the nation’. Talleyrand, the bishop of Autun and one of the few clerics to support the measure, argued that all Church property rightfully belonged to the nation and that its return, by helping to bring about a better society, should therefore be viewed as a ‘religious act’.

The runaway royal family busted by French democrats Louis and extravagant Marie Antoinette were apprehended in Varennes, just miles from the Austrian border. Some say the strong scent of the queen's perfume gave their whereabouts away.

In October 1789, the royal family was forced to leave Versailles for the Tuileries palace in the heart of Paris, where they lived in prison-like isolation. Marie Antoinette secretly requested help from other European rulers, including her royal siblings in Austria and Naples. On the night of June 20, 1791, the royal family attempted to flee. Their escape plan was said to have been engineered by Axel von Fersen, the Swedish count who was rumored to be one of the Queen's lovers. It is incontestable that Marie Antoinette's brother awaited the royal family just across the border and that he was accompanied by troops ready to invade. 

They were caught in the small town of Varennes, half-way to the border, and brought back to Paris, prisoners now of the Revolutionary government. On the night of August 10, 1792, militants attacked the royal palace where Marie Antoinette and her family were being held and forced the Legislative Assembly to "suspend" the King. Little more than a month later, on September 20, the new National Convention was convened, and two days later it voted to declare France a republic, thus abolishing the monarchy. From that moment on, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette were no longer King and Queen, but, like many others, imprisoned citizens suspected of treason.

Edmund-Burke, Radical Arms, The conclusion of the French Revolution

James Gillray, "The Zenith of French Glory - the Pinnacle of Liberty.(Louis XVI) Religion, Justice, Loyalty and all the Bugbears of Unenlightened Minds, Farewell!", February 12, 1793. Etching

A French Gentleman of the Court of Louis XVI ; A French Gentleman of the Court of Egalité, James Gillray, 1799.

A sarcastic treatment from England of French manners that contrasts the weakness of the old regime with the vulgar arrogance of the new revolutionary regime. The engraver also seems to be pointing toward two entirely different views of masculinity.

In England, James Gillray (1757-1815) adopted the caricatural style of Bruegel, to create caricatures of his contemporary statesmen that today can be categorized as political cartoons in which his wit was directed not only against the political and legislative abuses of his time but also against the morals of the royal family. Gillray initially supported the French Revolution, and it's principles of liberty , but when the revolution turned violent particularly during the work of the Terror he turned against, nevertheless later on he turned against the tyrannical regime of Napoleon Bonaparte, describing him as "Boney the carcase-butcher" in a number of offensive images.

George Cruikshank (1792 - 1878) was at his best when he was dealing with socio-cultural issues. His most celebrated of social cartoons were his Monstrosities, which were published annually from 1816 to 1828. As the conservative Victorian era began (1837) most forms of satirical art grew to be unfashionable. George Cruikshank thus turned his talents to the illustrated book, including Dickens's Oliver Twist, which bear testimony to his artistic talent.

Bonaparte with authority commandeth his soldiers with fixed bayonets during the attack on the Council of Five Hundred. Note the exaggeration of his uniform and his hat feathers trying to give a comic note to the scene. They brandish proudly tricolor on what is written "Long live Bonaparte triumvirate - Seyes - Ducos." On the young drummer boy's instrument is inscribed "Vive la Liberté".

In August of 1794 Napoleon was arrested because he had been a supporter of Maximilien Rosbespierre. He was accused of treason. Although he was released his career seemed to be over. Then in October of 1795, the government was threatened with a revolt in Paris. Paul Barras, commander of the home forces, appointed Napoleon to defend the capital. "With amazing swiftness Napoleon massed men and artillery at important places in Paris The attack of 30,000 national guards was driven back by his men. One year later at the age of 26, he was rewarded with the position of commander in chief of the interior French army in Italy.

When Napoleon accepted the position as the commander of the French Army he received a chilly reception by his generals. Yet, as Augereau one of the generals admitted , something about this Bonaparte frightened them. That day Napoleon issued the following order, "Soldiers! You are badly fed, almost naked. The government owes you a great deal, but it can do nothing for you. Your patience and courage do you honor, but give you neither worldly goods nor glory. I shall lead you into the most fertile plains in the world where you will find big cities and wealthy provinces. You will win honor, fame and riches. Soldiers of the Army of Italy! Could courage and constancy possibly fail you?"

Once Napoleon took over it didn't take long for him to turn the group of ill disciplined soldiers into an effective fighting force. In a series of stunning victories, Napoleon defeated four Austrian generals in succession, each army he fought got bigger and bigger. This forced Austria and its allies to make peace with France. He returned to Paris as a conquering hero. When he returned he received a huge welcome

The governing Directory was happy to send Napoleon to far-off Egypt. On the paper spread over the table is written "Subject: Send Bonaparte to Egypt to prevent the organizing of the Executive." According to some authors, Bonaparte can also be seen as Banquo in Shakespeare's Macbeth, who encountering the witches hear their prophesy about his future,that his descendants will be kings. Bonaparte, simply dressed in a long white shirt with a tight belt and boots is accusing the Board of wanting to remove soldiers as the only reward for his victories in Italy.

Bonaparte, depicted in a bizarre military costume, furiously reads a dispatch addressed to "Mounseer Beau-Naperty ", which advising him to be cautious. On the paper dropping from his left hand is written; "The conquest of the Chouans (French royalists), old song called into music.", Signifying that England does not trust the Bonaparte promises of reconciliation. Behind him the second and third consuls are depicted as two buffoons trying to read over his shoulder. On the left, the messenger, carrying the red cap, awaiting Bonaparte's response.

A courteous Bonaparte is politely welcoming to Paris the vulgar John Bull and his coarse bride Hibernia, representing England and Ireland, that are recently united by the Act of Union 1801. John Bull thanks his host by addressing him as Bonny Party. He also uses the word "gammon", which has the double meaning of "nonsense, humbug," and a cured or smoked ham; implying that for John Bull, this is not a simple courtesy visit. His wife (Ireland) interrupts him, telling him he needs to learn some manners.

English cartoonists are beginning to represent John Bull as squire with top hat, Colorful jacket and culotte, a style of tight pants ending just below the knee, first popularized in France during the reign of Henry III. Bull's conservative instinct is in contrast to the excesses of the Jacobins. Created in 1712 by John Arbuthnot, John Bull became widely known from cartoons by Sir John Tenniel published in the British humor magazine Punch during the middle and late 19th century. In those cartoons, he was portrayed as an honest, solid, farmer figure, often in a Union Jack waistcoat, and accompanied by a bulldog. He was explicitly used as the antithesis of the sans-culotte during the French Revolution.

The three English visitors bow before Bonaparte. Fox, the first character on left, is wearing a revolutionary cap and has bowed so low that his pants are torn. Erskine, in the middle, dressed in the black habit of lawyers and a paper out of his pocket says "O'Conners Brief." Beside him, bows Harvey Christian Combe, the Lord Mayor of London (recognizable from his gold chain). A paper out of his pocket reads "Essay on Porter Brewing by H. C. " Comb who acquired the Woodyard Brewery, of Castle Street, situated midway between the City and the West End of London was remarkable for his energy and great business ability. He became Lord Mayor in 1799, and was returned five times as the City's representative in Parliament. Sitting on a high chair decorated with elegant revolutionary symbols, Bonaparte receives the homage with one foot on a small stool, the other on the carpet covered raised podium. Note that he wears a director's uniform, not that of the First Consul.

Napoleon wearing an unflattering military uniform wearing a pirate crown adorned with weapons and a skull. On the 9th of November 1799 (18 Brumaire) General Napoleon Bonaparte overthrew the Directory and assumed leadership of the French nation. Napoleon's victory at Marengo June 1800 followed by Moreau's at Hohenlinden in December 1800 forced Austria into a separate peace.

Impressed by the exploits and eastern temptations offered by General, now First Consul Bonaparte, Tsar Paul inclined towards France. Along with Sweden, Denmark, and Prussia; Russia formed the Baltic League of Armed neutrality to resist Britain's efforts to enforce the blockade of France. This had added seriousness because of Britain's reliance on the Baltic ports for imports of grain, naval stores and for export markets. Britain was almost completely alone without an ally to be found across Europe. By stroke of good fortune with perhaps a (some have suggested there is a hint of complicity on Britain's part), Tsar Paul was assassinated on March 21st 1801. The new Tsar Alexander was no admirer of Napoleon and the promised Franco-Russian prosperity where they would settle the fate of northern Europe and the near east together, now evaporated like a mirage. Nine days later Nelson destroyed the Danish fleet in Copenhagen ending any potential for a combined fleet to threaten British naval superiority.

In the midst of the Swiss crisis in 1802 France annexed Elba and Piedmont and in October Parma was occupied. To integrate these territories into the national patrimony was going beyond the cherished natural frontiers, and at such a critical juncture! This was flying in the face of all reason.

The perception of the peace treaty with England. Napoleon had foreign expectations that encouraged him to seek peace. Initially and as Britain feared, he hoped to diplomatically and militarily defeat Britain, but once the opportunity to defeat Britain had diminished there were pressing reasons for peace. For the people of France the revolution had turned out to be a roller coaster ride, and to a large measure the reason General Bonaparte's take-over of the government was so popular was that he was perceived to be strong enough to bring things back under control in peace as he had in war. Victories alone were no longer enough, what was the point of victory if it didn't bring peace?

Here a thin and elegant, but cunning and deceitful Bonaparte who has taken care to place his hat and sword on the floor, implying that he is no longer a warrior but a friend, courts a plump, prosperous, but outrageously dressed England (Britannia) who is depicted as a bit naive. Having set aside, too, her trident and shield, she is captivated by the fellow's charm, knowing that "he will disappoint again." In the background, the portraits of George III and Napoleon's face each others, but the eyes are wary, even-though their outstretched hands seem to merge. It is said that Napoleon was extremely amused by this cartoon.

In the Treaty of London, signed on the first of 0ctober 1801, the guarantee of a single great power in charge of Malta was first abandoned for the collective guarantee of its independence from all the six European powers: Britain, France, Spain, Austria, Russia and Prussia. Although the last three were not present at the table, the protection and guarantee of Malta's independence was required from all of them. British forces were to be withdrawn, the fortification were to be left intact and for the next year, 1802, Malta was to be garrisoned by Naples from which Napoleon was agreeing to pull his troops out of. Following this the reconstituted Knights of St John would again hold the island.

However virtually none of this ever occurred. None of the other powers ever offered their guarantee (although Russia toyed with the idea); Britain never withdrew her garrison, and when Naples sent the temporary garrison there were denied admission to the fortresses. The nominated Grandmaster could not be persuaded to accede until March when it was already too late, and the Knights of St John were insolvent and unable to govern the island in any case. By March both sides were talking of the possibility of war over Malta. France had never disarmed but further military preparations for St Domingo (or wherever) were in evidence. There was talk in England that French commercial agents had surveyed British and Irish harbours and defences. On March the 6th, Britain began a partial rearmament in response on the 13th of March there occurred a famous scene: At a Sunday afternoon drawing room review in front of 200 other guests Napoleon either staged or actually lost his temper and made a scene. In a voice that everyone in the room could hear he raged, "So you are determined to go to war." The English envoy, Whitworth, was stunned at this impropriety and did not know how best to reply. Napoleon then stormed off to complain further of British warmongering to the Spanish and Russian ambassadors.

Britain was saying plainly that Malta would not be evacuated without some concession on France's part. Whitworth could threaten 'Malta or war' because he believed Napoleon was so determined over Malta that he would offer concessions to obtain this object. One such concession would have been the abandonment of Louisiana. On the 13th of April Monroe arrived from the United States to negotiate the Louisiana purchase. The transaction was completed on the 3rd of May and thus Napoleon gives evidence that his hopes for overseas expansion were gone. The purchase price of $15m (Spanish Dollars) USA 15 years bonds, (less nearly a third deducted by USA for economic damages) was immediately on sold to Dutch and ironically to British bankers at 87.5% raising $8.8m for the coming war. This was a virtual a fire-sale! The Treaty of Amiens was signed on March 25, 1802. The news arrived in London on the 29th. There was intense relief and the populace now gratefully looked forward to falling prices and rising prosperity. Much goodwill had been lost and many were fatalistic or suspicious but peace had been achieved. However, a lack of trust between Britain and France caused the collapse of the Peace of Amiens in the late-spring of 1803. Indeed, by 1804 Napoleon's conduct in Italy and Germany pushed Russia and Austria closer to an anti-French alliance.

Here the drinking companions begin a quarrel: the French soldier draws his sword, while John Bull falls on his back in the middle of his beer and his ham. But with his broken oar (symbolizing the battered British sea power) he threatens to strike back. He has in his hand a map of Malta, and tramples on the Treaty of Amiens. The French has already snatched Hanover. On the wall, a lion, symbolizing France, attacks the English leopard. The turkey, on the counter, represents the English sovereign, George III, who was identified with George Dandin, a Molière character, a fool, who admits his folly while suggesting that wisdom would not help him because, if things in fact go against us, it is pointless to be wise.

"Plumb Pudding in Danger", James Gillray, 1805
William Pitt and Napoleon dividing the world between them. Pitt takes the ocean: symbolically, his fork resembles a trident. Napoleon takes Europe, with the exception of Britain, Sweden, and Russia. At Trafalgar, the Royal Navy ensured its maritime supremacy for the rest of the war by destroying a combined Franco-Spanish fleet. At Austerlitz, Napoleon crushed an Austro-Russian army to become the master of Europe for the next seven years.

John Bull worriedly inspects the small workshop of Bonaparte, to see what the kid is up to. He is carving and accumulating wooden vessels. Bull appears reassured because the vessels are accumulated in the trash basket. But the viewer is not fooled: the implications here are quite clear; John Bull will not notice the mischievous action of Bonaparte, and England will sleep peacefully.

Bonaparte just crosses the Channel. Britannia desperately opens her arms for help from doctors (Addington and Hawkesbury) reminiscent of Shakespeare's Hamlet famous line; "Angels and ministers of grace defend us!".

Their support is of no use, even if Addington tries to revive her with gunpowder. Sheridan's patriotic attitude, who dressed as a clown here, seems to be based on ulterior mercantile motives. As for Fox, with his hat pulled over his eyes, he is unable to see the seriousness of the situation. It appears that nobody assumes responsibility for the peace treaty of Amiens, .

Napoleon's nocturnal dreams: the massacre of Royalist insurgents during the 13th Vendemiaire, executions of Jaffa, many victims seeking revenge. Bonaparte here is also accused of having sacrificed his soldiers for fearful of being assassinated in a turmoil. He is holding in his hand a map of Malta and England. Campaign plans are on his nightstand.

“Boney bear Jemmy Wright, who shave as well as any Man, almost not quite.” 1806

Napoleon, as a barber, is shaving off the sovereigns of European countries' hair and beards and is described in this cartoon as “shaver general to most of the Sovereigns on the Continent.” The bleeding Dutchman and the bleeding Emperor of Austria praise the closeness of their shaves. The Dutchman says: “Yaw Mynheer very close shaver, its nix my doll when you are used to it, ” and the German Hanover prince says: “I hope he don’t mean to shave me as bare as he has you and my neighbor Austria there? I should to sit here so quietly with my face lathered!!” Francis I addresses John Bull whom is looking through the barber shop window while passing by:“Come Johnny, come in and be shaved, don’t be frightened at the size of the Razor, it cuts very clean I assure you!”. Bull refuses the Emperor’s encouragement to enter and notes the gashes and red marks left by the razor: “By Goes it seems and leaves a dom’d sight of gashes behind as you and Mynheer can testify!!”. In the center of the caricature, the Prussian king sits lathered waiting for his turn to be shaved. He has a nervous expression on his face, and his right hand clenches a paper titled “Plan of Hanover.” 

At the right of the caricature, Napoleon and Talleyrand attack the Sultan of Turkey by attempting to shave his beard. The Sultan tries to pull away:“By the Holy Prophet I must not part with my beard. Why my people will not acknowledge me for the grand Signor again at Constantinople!” Talleyrand tries to calm him down: “Come, come don’t make such a fuss, and my Master will cut away when he catches anybody in his shop,” and Napoleon: “Lather away Talley I’ll soon ease him on his superflicities and make him look like my Christian Customers.”.

A War of 1812 satire on Anglo-American and Franco-American relations. England's "lesson" is about the seriousness of American determination to maintain freedom on the high seas, while France is warned of Yankee firmness on matters of "Retribution" and "Respect."

On the left, Columbia, as a maiden with staff and liberty cap, a shield with stars and stripes, and an eagle, gestures toward John Bull, saying, "I tell you Johnny, you must learn to read Respect --Free trade -- Seamans rights &c -- As for you Mounseer Beau Napperty, when John gets his lesson by heart I'll teach you Respect -- Retribution &c. &c."

Bonaparte, standing on a hillock in the center: "Ha-ha -- Begar me be glad to see Madam Columbia angry with dat dere Bull -- But me no learn respect -- me no learn retribution -- Me be de grand Emperor."
John Bull, in knee breeches, standing at right: "I don't like that lesson -- I'll read this pretty lesson." He points to the pages of a book that read, "Power constitutes Right."

Trial of Napoleon Bonaparte, George Cruikshank, 1813

This caricature sneers at Napoleon Bonaparte leaving his army on its horrendous retreat from Moscow and for his betrayal of the ideals of the French Revolution.

Napoleon duels with Gerhard Leberecht von Blücher, while a British sailor judges the match.  Ink-and-watercolor by the Prussian artist Johann Gottfried Schadow (1764-1850)

The caricature parodies political conditions at the time. Following Napoleon’s retreat from Russia, the Germanic states, led by Prussia, reentered the wars against Napoleon. At the time the caricature was made, Prussian incursions were the primary threat to France, and von Blücher was the field marshal who pressed to move the Prussian army into France itself. The work is .

Napoleon’s faction includes French generals, while von Blücher’s includes German peasants and a Russian cossack. 

Messieurs, avec quel rasoir me faites-vous la barbe ? The British are ready to give Napoleon a close shave.

Field Marshal Gebhard Leberecht von Blucher, who led Prussian forces at the 1815 Battle of Waterloo, alongside his British counterpart, Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington trying to  put the lid on top of France’s Napoleon Bonaparte

Le Cesar de 1815 - je suis venu, j'ai vu, ... j'ai fui

Napoleon I carrying a broken standard with a dead eagle on top and a piece of paper that states "Vite à Paris"; he is fleeing from a battlefield strewn with dead French soldiers; above, the figure of Fame blows her trumpet and carries a paper that states "il j'est sauvé de l'Egypte, de Madrid, de Moscou, de Leipsic, de Mont-St. Jean"

Napoleon on St. Helena: "Je fume en pleurant mes péchés." (I smoke and cry about my sins.) - 1815

The Kings' Cake being Cut at the Congress of Vienna (November 1814-June 1815), L. to R. Emperor Francis I of Austria (1768-1835); King Frederick William III of Prussia (1770-1840); Czar Alexander I of Russia (1777-1825); Joachim Murat, king of Naples (1767-1815); Napoleon II, king of Rome (1811-1832);

On April 20, 1814, the dethroned Emperor left France for the isle of Elba, where he was exiled under the terms of the Treaty of Fontainebleau. Napoleon would be allowed to rule Elba, which had 12,000 inhabitants. He was under the constant watch of Austrian and French guards. Nevertheless, on February 26, 1815, Napoleon managed to sneak past his guards and somehow escape from Elba, slip past interception by a British ship, and return to France. At the Congress of Vienna, where the European powers were meeting to discuss how to rearrange Europe in the aftermath of Napoleon's conquests, news of Napoleon's escape from Elba delivered an intense shock to all. On March 13, 1815, the nations represented there declared Napoleon an outlaw.

On the extreme left stands Francis I, grabbing the Italian side of the map marked 'Lombardie' and 'Etat de Venise'. He says with a sly leer "Les absens ont tort..." (he who is absent is always in the wrong), On his left stands Frederick William, close to the Tsar, he tears at a piece inscribed 'Saxe' which includes an extension to 'Mayence', saying with an imbecile stare, "Prenons bien les choses..." (But let's deal with the issues in the right order.) Alexander, holding a document inscribed 'Pologne', puts his left hand near the 'Duché de Curlande' and 'Lithuanie'. He looks to the right, exclaiming, "Je crains le Revenant!..." (I fear the returned-one!...) On his left, in the centre of the design and a little apart from the others, stands the Regent, with a pyramid of curls on a head like a pineapple. He silently holds up a pair of scales, one weighted by a heap of coins, the other containing a label: 'Le prix du sang!! . . .' (the blood money). On the right is 'le revenant', Napoleon holding the part of the map on which are 'France' and 'Paris'; he slashes at it with his sword, detaching it by a clean cut which reaches to les 'Pays Bas'; on it is inscribed 'Gare à qui y touchera! . . .' ( a reference to Napoleon's coronation on May 26, 1805. In the Duomo he took the Iron Crown and, placing it on his head, uttered the words: «Dieu me l’a domnée, gare a qui y touchera». God gave it to me, beware whoever touches it.) He says: "Qui compte sans son Hôte compte deux fois. . . ." (He that reckons without his host, must reckon over again meaning reckon not your chickens before they are hatched) 

The little King of Rome clutches his father's overcoat, saying, "Papa garde ma part. . . ." (father take care of mine). On Napoleon's right stands Murat, handsome and imposing. He holds 'Naples', which is next the cut made by Napoleon. Under the map is Talleyrand, grovelling on the ground and holding a profile medallion of Louis XVIII. His club-foot is conspicuous, and he wears many stars and ribbons. He says: "Je vais devenir d'Evêque . . . Meunier! Cachons nous, je suis sur un vilain pied ici bas. . . ." I'll become a bishop. . . Meunier! let us hide ourselves, I'm on a wrong foot down there".

The Capitulation, caricature of Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord (1754-1838) 30th March 1814, French School, (19th century)

Unique in his own age and a phenomenon in any, the enigmatic Charles-Maurice, Prince de Talleyrand, was a statesman of outstanding ability and extraordinary contradictions. He was a world-class rogue who held high office in five successive regimes. A well-known opportunist and a notorious bribe taker, Talleyrand's gifts to France arguably outvalued the vast personal fortune he amassed in her service. Once a supporter of the Revolution, after the fall of the monarchy, he fled to England and then to the United States. Talleyrand returned to France two years later and served under Napoleon, and represented France at the Congress of Vienna.

The Man with Six Heads', caricature of Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord (1754-1838), 1815

The French diplomat and statesman Charles Maurice Talleyrand-Perigod is portrayed as a man "floating with the tide". First published in 1815 as "L'Homme aux six tetes. Le Nain jaune" (the six-headed man [referring to Talleyrands prominent role in six different regimes: As Bishop of Autun during the reign of Louis XVI, as a member of the National Convention during the French Revolution, as Foreign Minister during the Directoire Era, as Foreign Minister of Napoleon the Consul and Napoleon the Emperor and finally as Foreign Minister and Minister President of the re-established Bourbon Monarchy).

A representative of the clergy in the States-General of 1789, Talleyrand sided with the revolutionists. He proposed the appropriation of church lands by the state, endorsed the civil constitution of the clergy, and was excommunicated (1791) by the pope after consecrating two "constitutional" bishops. In 1792 he was sent by the National Assembly on a mission to London to secure Great Britain's neutrality, but the radical turn of the French Revolution nullified his success. A lifelong advocate of constitutional monarchy and peace, Talleyrand sought refuge in England in Sept., 1792, following the fall of the monarchy. In 1794 he went to the United States, where he stayed until after the establishment (Nov., 1795) of the Directory in France, when he returned (Sept., 1796) to Paris.

Peter V. Curl claims that Talleyrand's part in the Revolution was not simply a question of opportunism, as many historians have claimed, but that he was politically on the side of the revolutionaries. He explains that Talleyrand served six successive governments on the basis that the State was a "metaphysical concept" which had to be obeyed and served in the most enlightened manner possible. The diplomatic beginnings of Talleyrand's career go back to the Ancien Régime. Talleyrand, according to Schroeder, "took it for granted that a permanent place and a role for Austria should be found within the international system, and he tried to come up with one which would please Napoleon. Napoleon, very much a criminal with respect to international politics, clearly did not see why he should be obliged to grant any role whatsoever to Austria".

Negotiation at the Congress of Verona (1822)refusing to recognize the Greek declaration of independence

The Congress of Vienna established an international system of reactionary governments dedicated to maintaining a set of European boundaries, preventing revolutions and changes in government, and stopping any one power from becoming too powerful. To this end, the Congress powers agreed to meet whenever trouble should crop up in Europe to discuss how to fix it. This Holy Alliance, appropriating the name of the coalition of Christian values Alexander had wanted to set up at the Congress of Vienna, was also called the Congress System, and aimed at stopping any revolutionary attempt in any part of Europe. To deal with the revolutionary trends, Metternich called the Congress of Verona in 1822. The congress moved against the Greek revolutionaries, who really did not have the military power to take over Turkey at this time anyway. The Congress also allowed France to send an army into Spain to end the revolt and stabilize the Bourbon king. The revolution in Spain was quickly smashed.

The Greeks were the most privileged minority in the Ottoman State, and enjoyed substantial privileges. As H. Hearder states in his Europe in the Nineteenth Century, 1830-1880, "European Turkey differed from the rest of the continent in one significant respect. Whereas Christian governments in the rest of Europe had permitted no Muslim communities, Christians had been officially tolerated." The Greeks were also the most populous among the non-Muslims, and under the system of "millet" the leader of the Orthodox church, the Phanariot Patriarch, was always elected from the Greeks. Therefore the whole of the Orthodox population, Bulgarians, Serbians, Romanians, and Albanians were under Greek predominance. During the Napoleonic Wars the the French revolutionary ideas came to Greece. After defeating the Austrians in Italy in 1797, the French seized and then annexed the Ionian Islands.

The Congress of Vienna

The Congress of Vienna did not have the features of a real Congress. Although many European delegates arrived for the Congress, it never sat as one. In fact, most of the business was discussed in private informal sessions between the Big Four (Austria, Russia, Britain, and Prussia) and France, or during decadent feasts and balls. One attendee, Prince de Ligne, who was known for his wit, famously commented “Le Congres danse, mais ne marche pas” (The Congress dances, but does not progress).Prince Metternich’s network of spies, frequented salons (drawing rooms where the intellectual, political, and social elite gathered to converse) and intercepted letters, reading, copying, and re-sealing them, before delegates began to catch on and took measures to prevent intelligence from falling into Austrian hands.

At the congress, Metternich's mastery of diplomatic maneuvering earned him the title of "the coachman of Europe." More than any other single leader, he seemed to determine the future direction of the Continent. One observer described him as "not a genius but a great talent; cold, calm, imperturbable, and a supreme calculator." Metternich's main goal at the congress was to promote the idea of the "Concert of Europe": if all the great powers acted together or in "concert," they would be able to prevent the outbreak of any large European war like the Napoleonic Wars. They might also be able to see that "the foundations of a lasting peace are secured as much as possible." The Congress did have a positive and lasting impact on European history. The peace treaty signed on June 9, 1815 resulted in what Henry Kissinger called the longest period of peace Europe has ever known. It was also “the first international peace conference to discuss humanitarian issues” and resulted in a condemnation of the slave trade, and discussions on literary piracy and the civil rights of Jews.

"Porro unum est necessarium". "His Ambition will lead him to attempt that one thing."—Vide Napoleon Bonaparte's prophecy.

This print is a satire on Wellington's pressure over king's "Catholic emancipation".  The fight for Catholic emancipation began in the late 18th century in Ireland. A series of parliamentary measures in the 1770s and the 1780s, gradually restored certain liberties to the Catholic community in Ireland.  However, the Act of Union proved to be a set back. Introduced into the Irish Parliament following the Rebellion of 1798, William Pitt, the Prime Minister of Great Britain, and Lord Cornwallis, the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, both supported Catholic Emancipation as a component of the Act of Union, inspiring support from the majority Irish population. However, while the Act of Union passed and officially united the Kingdom of Ireland with England and Scotland under one parliament, Catholic Emancipation was overruled by King George III, who believed full liberties to Catholics would undermine this oath as sovereign. Unable to persuade the king, William Pitt resigned in protest. 

Catholic Emancipation gained new fervor under the leadership of Daniel O’Connell in the 1820s. O’Connell formed the Catholic Association in 1823 which was later reorganized in 1826. O’Connell believed that Westminster should repeal anti-Catholic legislation to justify their claim of representing all the people of Ireland. Known as “The Liberator,” he gained massive support for Catholic Emancipation through his powerful rhetoric and wide appeal, putting extreme pressure on Westminster. In July 1828, O’Connell was elected to Parliament for County Clare but was ineligible because he was Catholic. 
Recognizing the potential upheaval in Ireland if O’Connell were barred from his seat in Westminster, the Prime Minister, (Duke of Wellington) and the Home Secretary (Sir Robert Peel) convinced King George IV of the need for Catholic Emancipation.  

In this Print Wellington (left) sits back in an ornate chair in deep meditation; open on the table beside him is a large open book: 'Life of Oliver Cromwell'. He says (quoting Macbeth): '"I dare do all that becomes a man,— | Who dares do more, is none!"' On the table is a large royal crown across which lies Wellington's sword (the Sword of State), enormously long, and so tilted as to point to its owner's cocked hat which hangs on the wall so that the plume covers the face of Lawrence's W.L. portrait of George IV (seated on a sofa). Among the documents on the table two hang down showing their contents: [1] . . . 'depend upon every assistance from the Holy See also from France Italy Spain &c &c &c', [2] 'We have had but 7s|6d in the pound we shall shortly demand the remaining I2s|6d D. O'C—nn—l.' The King's portrait might well be his reflection in a mirror, while awaiting the Duke's decision. Behind Wellington, and almost hidden by a curtain, is a picture entitled 'House of Brunswick' in which an axe suggests an execution scene. Between the two pictures and above the table is a large design enclosed in a garter inscribed 'Tria juncta in Meo' [altered from 'Uno', the motto of the Order of the Bath]; within the circle is Britannia enclosed in a triangle, against each side of which respectively are the words 'King', 'Lords', 'Commons'. On the floor is a portrait head of Eldon, on a black ground, crumpled and torn across to suggest decapitation.

The inconveniences of a crowded drawing room", George Cruikshank, 1818

Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827) preferred to deal with socio-cultural issues and satirize morals. Rowlandson worked with Tobias George Smollett, whose radical books resulted in him being sent to prison for libel. Some of Rowlandson's political cartoons also got him in trouble and he was accused by his critics of being "coarse and indelicate".

Hodges Explanation of a Hundred Magistrates, Thomas. Rowlandson, 1815,

A yokel in a long smock stands before three elderly Justices of Peace. One of the justices says, How dare you Fellow to say it is unfair to bring you before one hundred Magistrates when you see there are but three of us.
The yokel tugs at his hair and replies, Why please your Worship you mun know – when I went to school they taught I that a one and two O’s stood for a hundred – so do you see your Worship be One and the other two be Cyphers!

By the nineteenth century, there were three types of courts for a criminal to be brought to justice: Magistrates' Courts ( Quarter Sessions and Petty Sessions), Assize Courts, and the Court of King's (or Queen's) Bench. Courts of Petty Sessions were introduced in the 18th century as there was too much work for the Quarter Sessions (which only met four times a year) to handle. At this time the county of Essex was split into administrative units known as Hundreds. Each Hundred covered a number of parishes. For each Hundred there was a Petty Sessions which dealt with minor criminal offences. Petty Sessions dealt with minor cases such as drunkenness, poaching and vagrancy. After the Summary Jurisdiction Act of 1848, all summary trials had to take place at formally constituted Petty Sessions, before at least two magistrates. Meetings became more regular and laws passed that required the proceedings to be recorded.

American Revolution

Lord North, Edmund Burke, Charles Fox, the Prince of Wales, and others attempting to break into the royal treasury. Political cartoon by unidentified illustrator from 1787.

Lord North was Prime Minister of Great Britain from January, 1770 to March, 1782. His early successes as Leader of the House and his efforts to cut the national debt brought him the confidence of a faction-ridden Parliament and the favor and friendship of King George III. But his failure to subdue the American colonies and the subsequent loss of the Revolutionary War brought an end to his ministry and forever darkened his name in history. For the first three years of the North ministry, the American colonies appeared calm. North had decided to retain the duty on tea imported into the American colonies. The colonists were of course angered by what they saw as an encroachment upon their own legislatures' prerogatives.Lord North's efforts to rescue the East India Tea Company from bankruptcy lead to the Boston Tea Party. Under the original proposal, the surplus inventories of tea would be shipped directly to the colonies. Consignees would be appointed to sell the tea in America. The duty on tea would have been removed. North, however, was unwilling to remove the tea duty. In May of 1773, the Tea Act passed the House of Commons with little opposition.

As information about the Tea Act filtered into the colonies, public opinion changed from placid to bitter resentment. In Boston, the first tea shipment arrived in November. Patriots would not allow the ship to unload its cargo, and the despised governor of Massachusetts, Thomas Hutchinson, would not permit the ship to sail from the harbor without paying the duty. The impasse came to an end on the night of 16 December when Boston patriots, dressed as Indians, boarded the ship and dumped the tea chest into Boston harbor. Word of the Boston Tea Party reached London on 20 January, 1774. Public opinion turned sharply against the colonists, especially Boston. The news was received bitterly by the North ministry. A policy of coercion was decided upon and Lord North drafted into legislation the Coercive Acts. Lord North intended on making a lesson of Massachusetts with the belief that the other colonies would not support her, but his assumptions were wrong. The moderates in the other colonies pledged their support to Massachusetts and called for a Continental Congress. Tensions mounted between the colonies and Great Britain. General Thomas Gage, now governor of the insolent colony of Massachusetts, warned in his letters of the impossibility of enforcing the Massachusetts Government Act without additional troops. By December, North realized that Great Britain was on the verge of war with her colonies. In January, he proposed a peace commission. He offered to eliminate the tea tax so long as the colonies promised to pay the salaries of civil authorities regularly. But it was too late. Events now overtook the hope of a peaceful reconciliation. On 16 April, 1775, a skirmish on the Lexington Green between Gage's troops and patriots transformed the American crisis into the American war. Bunker Hill followed later that summer. Lord North was forced to declare the colonies in a state of rebellion.

British officers, in a child-like manner, demonstrate skills in hopes of securing a command for the war with the American colonies. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.

Britannia lamenting her present state, her shield and broken lance by her side, "What a situation am I in sold by an American purchased by France Spain. Oh, wheres my Pitt." Four men are standing before her, from left, an American holding in his right hand a lance topped with liberty cap and in his left a sword with which he threatens her, next a Frenchman urges him to "frighten her." A Spaniard is standing next to the Frenchman with his back to Britannia, he wears a low hat and a cloak, and on the far right is a Dutchman. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.

This Gillray etching is a satire on the suspension of gold payments by the Bank of England. Prime minister William Pitt was forced to implement the issue of paper money when the Bank announced a gold shortage, due to loans it had made to finance the war with France. Rumors circulated that the Bank's coin was merely being held in reserve to send to the Continent in support of the war. Hence the significance of the locked chest, and the coins in the pockets of the lady's paper money dress. 

In Gillray's cartoon, he nicknamed the Bank of England the "Old Lady of Threadneedle Street", the first recorded use of the nickname. The tag has stuck ever since – and in his satire, Political Ravishment, the Old Lady's in danger. "Murder! Murder!" she cries. "Rape! Murder! O you villain! What, have I kept my honour so long to have it broke up by you at last? O murder! Rape! Ravishment! Ruin! Ruin! Ruin!!!"

The Able Doctor, or America Swallowing the Bitter Draught. 1774. London Magazine. British Cartoon Collection.

Following the colonists’ defiant display at the Boston Tea Party, the majority of England was surprised, bewildered, and angered by the colonists’ actions. After much debate in the Parliament, King George III assumed an active role in deciding punishment for the rebellious and costly colonists by personally advising Lord North, the Prime Minister of Britain at the time. This resulted in the “Coercive Acts,” passed in March 1774, which were intended to quell the colonists and force them into submission.

VIRTUAL REPRESENTATION 1775 Lord Bute aiming a blunderbuss at a man representing colonial America; a member of Parliament, pointing at the American, tells Bute "I give you that man's money for my use", to which the American responds by saying, "I will not be robbed". On the right, blindfolded, Britannia is about to stumble into "The pit prepared for others" while behind her, in the background, "The English Protestant town of Boston" is in flames. On the left kneels a monk holding a gibbet and a cross, behind him stands a Frenchman with sword raised; perched on a cliff and forming the backdrop to Bute, the monk, and the Frenchman, is the city of Quebec.

News from America, or the Patriots in the dumps

Lord North standing on a platform holding letter announcing the British capture of New York by General William Howe. A distraught woman "America" holding a liberty cap, sits at the base of the platform; others present react to the news. Confident that most Americans would welcome him, General Howe arrived in Boston on 25th May, 1775. By then the first shots of the American Revolution had already been fired, and American militia besieged Boston. The town of Charlestown had been destroyed by British naval gunfire and Joseph Warren, the popular President of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, had been killed. General Howe was stunned. The battle had made the possibility of a negotiated settlement much more remote by increasing the fury of the colonists while at the same time giving them confidence in their ability to fight the King’s regiments on even terms.

When it became obvious that only military force would break the stalemate, General Howe turned his full attention to the occupation of New York. With the arrival of yet more reinforcements, he believed his army was strong enough to successfully assault the rebel defences. In planning his offensive in New York Howe ignored his own often-stated belief that the quickest way to end the war was to destroy the Continental Army. A bloody victory now would not serve his purpose. Instead, he adopted a strategy of conquering ground rather than killing colonists. His strategy was to discourage the rebels by mounting a steady, irresistible advance through their farms and fields and forcing them from New York in much the same way he had been compelled to leave Boston. From Long Island, General Howe forced the rebels from Manhattan, across the Hudson, through New Jersey and to the banks of the Delaware River, not far from the colonial capital of Philadelphia. Here, General Washington’s foresight in taking all the boats on the river to the far side with his retreating army forced an end to the pursuit.

The rebel victories, though small, destroyed General Howe’s hopes of ending the war by spring. Encouraged by George Washington’s success, new recruits came forward to replace those who left his army. The British commander-in-chief abandoned most of New Jersey, along with his plan to pacify its inhabitants. He admitted that there now seemed no hope of suppressing the rebellion without crushing the American army. Washington, however, had already reached the same conclusion and was determined to preserve his troops rather than risk all on the outcome of a single battle. From the spring of 1777 until General Howe resigned his command and returned home in 1778, Sir William won several more victories, but he was never again able to catch the rebel army in the sort of trap he had let it escape from on Long Island.

This cartoon relates to The Treaty of Paris, which marks the official end of The American Revolutionary War, and the War of the Spanish Succession. With the Treaty of Paris, Great Britain acknowledged American independence. John Bull, representing England, is throwing up his arms in despair as a portly Dutchman, a Spaniard, and a Frenchman, are still nagging and a farting devil is flying away with a Map of America in his hands. In the background is a battle scene at Gibraltar. John Bull is teased first by a French man, who offers him snuff. Great Britain relinquished very little to the French, who were to carry their grievances into the Napoleonic Era. The Spaniard gestures toward Gibraltar, where a naval battle rages. In the treaty, Spain gave up Gibraltar, but regained Florida and Minorca. The Dutch, represented by the ill dressed man on the right, continued their negotiations into 1784.

Count de Rochambeau, French General of the Land Forces in America Reviewing the French, 1781

Comte de Rochambeau played a major role in helping America win independence during the American Revolution. He is considered to be one of the Founding Fathers of the United States of America for his role in winning the Revolutionary War and securing American independence from Britain.

The presidential election of 1800 is generally considered the nastiest in American history. The race between Federalist John Adams and Republican Thomas Jefferson was raucous, bitter, and unpredictable. The Adams' Federalists were divided and made a poor campaign. According to the Constitution, presidential electors were required to vote for two persons without indicating which office each was to fill, the one receiving the highest number of votes to be President and the candidate standing next to be Vice President.

In the 1796 election Adams had defeated Jefferson in the Electoral College, but only by the narrow margin of 71 to 68. With the second most votes Jefferson became vice president with no responsibilities besides presiding over the Senate. Adams sought to involve Jefferson in his new administration, but Jefferson declined any participation. In the election of 1800, Aaron Burr, the Republican candidate for Vice President, had received the same number of votes as Jefferson; as neither had a majority the election was thrown into the House of Representatives, where the Federalists held the balance of power. Although it was well known that Burr was not even a candidate for President, his friends and many Federalists began intriguing for his election to that high office. Had it not been for the vigorous action of Hamilton the prize might have been snatched out of Jefferson’s hands. Not until the thirty-sixth ballot on February 17, 1801, was the great issue decided in his favor.

Peter Pencil, Intercourse or Impartial Dealings, 1809

President Jefferson is being held up for money by Napoleon and King George. Critics of Jefferson believed that he had paid too much for Louisiana and was prepared to pay too much for the Floridas. This cartoon also satirizes the failure of Jefferson's use of the embargo and restrictions on trade as a curb on French and British depredations of American shipping.

Cruikshank, The Happy Effects of that Grand System of Shutting Ports Against the English, 1808

President Jefferson stands on a dais addressing a group of disgruntled Members of Congress. Before Jefferson is a table covered with papers inscribed 'Pettition and Pettition New York'. Napoleon is hiding behind Jefferson's presidential chair whispering; "You shall be King hereafter". Jefferson addresses the assembly: "Citizens - I am sorry I cannot call you my Lords Gentlemen!! - This is a Grand Philosophical Idea - shutting our Ports against the English - if we continue the Experiment for about fifteen or twenty years, we may begin then to feel the good 'Effects' - in the mean time to prevent our sailors from being idle. I would advise you to imploy them in various works of husbandry and by that means we may gain the protection of that great and mighty Emperor King Napoleon!! 

A small dog, John 'Bull' (its collar so inscribed), barks "Bow Wow" at the President. The Congressmen say: "How are we to Dispose of our produce; My warehouses are full; Yea friend thou may as well tell us to cut of our nose to be revenged of our face [a Quaker in a broad-brimmed hat]; My famely is Starving'; my Goods are Spoiling; It was not the case in Great Washintons time; we must speak to him in more 'forceble language'.

William Charles, "A Boxing Match, or Another Bloody Nose for John Bull," Lithograph, New York, 1813.

The Anglo-American War of 1812 or the American'Second War for Independence, was directly related to the Napoleonic conflict. In British eyes the Americans had stabbed them in the back while they they were fighting Napoleon. Britain relied on a maritime economic blockade to defeat France. When American merchants tried to breach this blockade, the British introduced new laws, the ‘Orders in Council’, to block them, and when British warships stopped American merchant ships, they forcibly impressed any British sailors they found into the Royal Navy.

James Madison's Tax Policies During the War of 1812 .

Madison holds an iron rod bearing a banner which proclaims the War of 1812 popular slogan “Free Trade Sailors Rights.” The downtrodden taxpayer on whose back Madison stands replies,
“None of your Boesting / Mr. Jammy say I / Tax, Tax upon our / Backs is the unanimous cry / it was by your Iron Rod that / we became Rule’d. / Till every Cent out of / our Pockets is foold.”
James Madison (1751-1836) was the principal architect of the United States Constitution, the Secretary of State under President Thomas Jefferson, and the fourth president of the United States. As president, Madison continued to support aggressive trade measures against Britain and requested a declaration of war against Great Britain in 1812 when commercial pressure failed to achieve a change in British policy. The war expenses added to the economic problems, and Congress was forced to find additional sources for funding. Taxes on houses, land, and slaves were enacted in 1813, 1815, and 1816, with additional duties on liquor licenses, auction sales, carriages, and refined sugar, among other items. During the War of 1812, Madison faced almost treasonous opposition from merchants and public officials in New England. But he refused to limit civil liberties or declare martial law, as he was urged to do by supporters

President James Madison fleeing from Washington, D.C., which is being burned by the British, during the War of 1812.

Reaching Washington on the evening of August 24, the British found a city largely deserted, with the only resistance being ineffective sniper fire from one house. The first order of business for the British was to attack the navy yard, which they burned. British troops next arrived at the US Capitol, which was still unfinished. According to later accounts, the British were impressed by the fine architecture of the building, and some of the officers had qualms about burning it. According to legend, Admiral Cockburn sat in the chair belonging to the Speaker of the House and asked, "Shall this harbor of Yankee democracy be burned?" The British Marines with him yelled "Aye!" Orders were given to torch the building. 

The British troops worked diligently to set fires inside the Capitol, destroying years of work by artisans brought from Europe. With the burning Capitol lighting the sky, troops also marched to burn an armory. At about 10:30 pm, approximately 150 Royal Marines formed up in columns and began marching westward on Pennsylvania Avenue, following the route used in modern times for inauguration day parades. The British troops moved quickly, with a particular destination in mind. By that time President James Madison had fled to safety in Virginia, where he would meet up with his wife and servants from the president's house.

A figurative portrayal of the presidential race of 1824. A crowd of cheering citizens watch as candidates (left to right) John Quincy Adams, William Crawford, and Andrew Jackson stride toward the finish. Henry Clay has dropped from the race and stands, hand on head, on the far right saying, "D--n it I cant save my distance--so I may as well "draw up."" He is consoled by a man in riding clothes, "Well dont distress yourself--there'll be some scrubbing by & then you'll have a chance." Assorted comments come from the crowd, reflecting various sectional and partisan views.

A Westerner with stovepipe hat and powder horn: "Hurra for our Jacks-"son."" Former President John Adams: "Hurra for our son "Jack.""

Two men in coachmen's livery: "That inne-track fellow [Crawford] goes so well; that I think he must have got the better of the bots [boss?]." and "Like enough; but betwixt you I--I dont think he'll ever get the better of the "Quinsy.""

A ragged Irishman: "Blast my eyes if I dont "venter" a "small" horn of rotgut on that "bald filly" in the middle [Adams]."

A Frenchman: "Ah hah! Mon's Neddy I tink dat kick on de "back of you side" is worse den have no dinner de fourt of july."

In the left background is a platform and an inaugural scene, the "Presidential Chair" with a purse "$25,000 per Annum" (center) and an imaginative portrayal of the Capitol in the distance.

The major figures in American national politics in 1838 are gently satirized, each characterized as riding a favorite issue or "hobbyhorse." At the lead (far left) is President Martin Van Buren, riding a horse "Sub-Treasury," which he calls his "Old Hickory nag." The artist refers to Van Buren's independent treasury program, a system whereby federal funds were to be administered by revenue-collecting agencies or local "sub-treasuries" rather than by a national bank. The Independent Treasury Bill was perceived as an outgrowth of predecessor Jackson's anti-Bank program. Another hobbyhorse, "United States Bank" (center), is shared by Whig senators Henry Clay and Daniel Webster, leaders of congressional opposition to Jackson and Van Buren's respective fiscal agendas. Clay says, "Either you or I must get off Dan, for this horse wont carry double!" Webster responds, "Dash my Whig if I get off Hal!" Directly behind Van Buren Democratic Senator Thomas Hart Benton rides a horse "Specie Currency," an allusion to Benton's championing of hard money economics. 

Benton was identified with administration efforts to curb the use of currency in favor of "specie" or coin, and to increase the ratio of gold to silver in circulation. He says, "My Golden Poney carries more weight than any of them!" Behind Clay and Webster is South Carolina senator John C. Calhoun, advocate of state's rights and the driver of Southern nullification of the "Tariff of Abominations." On the right are William Henry Harrison, in military uniform and riding an "Anti-Masonic" hobby, and Massachusetts Congressman John Quincy Adams on his "Abolition" mount. Harrison's horse is named after the party which supported his 1836 bid for the Presidency. When he says, ". . . unless there is another Morgan abduction, I'm afraid he'll [the horse] lose his wind!" he alludes to the suspicious 1826 death of William Morgan (purportedly at the hands of Masons) which fueled considerable anti-Masonic sentiment in the United States. Adams laments, "This horse, instead of being my Topaz, is my Ebony."

This 1859 Punch cartoon is captioned ''What? You young Yankee-noodle, strike your own father!''

The "Citizen King" and the Royal Pear: 

The case against Charles Philipon

After the Revolution of July 1830 Charles Philipon (1800-1862), a caricaturist and a talented journalist , founded La Caricature, the first modern illustrated satirical weekly paper. During four years of its publication, the paper was constantly prosecuted, fined, and censored. In 1832, before La Caricature's closure Philipon started a daily paper, Le Charivari , which printed a new drawing every day. Philipon frequently criticized King Louis-Phillipe the "Citizen King" whose pear-shaped head he exploited to the full in the Poire Royale or the Royal Pear series. He wound up in jail several times. The pear quickly became the commonly-recognized symbol of Louis-Phillipe and his entire regime. At the time, in France calling a person a pear was tantamount to calling him a buffoon. As part of his defense, Philipon sketched a series of drawings that transformed the king’s head into a pear. He explained that if the king’s face resembled a pear, then all pears should be subject to a fine. The sarcastic tone of Philipon’s argument was lost on the judge who charged Philipon with a fine of two thousands francs and six months in jail. But the artist was unrepentant and on November 17, 1831, three days after the trial, La Caricature published an account of the proceedings, and in the following week, Philipon published the drawings from the trial as a lithograph. However, the issue was seized by the government.

Charles Philipon's account of the court proceedings with respect to his portrayal of King Louis-Phillipe as a pear.

Here is a translation; THE PEARS , Made in the Paris Court of Assizes by the Director of LA CARICATURE. Sold to pay the 6000 francs fine of the newspaper Le Charivari. At the request of a large number of subscribers, we present today in Le Charivari, the pears which served as our defense in the case where La Caricature was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment and a 2,000 francs fine. If, to recognize the monarch in a cartoon, you do not expect it to have a resemblance, you will fall into the absurd [?]. Look at these shapeless sketches, to which I limited my defense.
[Beneath the 1st drawing] This sketch looks like a Louis-Philippe, do you condemn it?
[Beneath the 2nd drawing] Then we must condemn this one, which resembles the first.
[Beneath the 3rd drawing] Then condemn another, which resembles the second.
[Beneath the 4th drawing] And finally, if you are consistent, you can not absolve this pear, which resembles the preceding sketch.
Thus, a pear, a bun, and all the grotesque heads in which chance has maliciously placed this sad resemblance, you can inflict on the author five years imprisonment and a fine of five thousand francs!! Admit it, gentlemen, this is a peculiar freedom of the press!!

Gargantua, Honoré Daumier , 1831

One of the most important political cartoonists in Philipon's paper was Honoré Daumier (1808-1879). In late 1831 the publishing business La Maison Aubert submitted one of his cartoons "Gargantua" to the "depot legal" for publication and put it on display in the window of the shop. It was soon seized, along with other prints done by Daumier, by the Paris police. They ordered the owner of the publishing house to destroy the lithographic stone and all the remaining proofs. In February 1932 Daumier, the owner of the publishing house, and the printer, were all brought to trial for arousing hatred and contempt of the king's government, and for offending the king's person. In the trial the argument was over whether "Gargantua" represented the king personally or if it was a symbolic representation of the king's swollen budget. All three of the men were convicted, but only Daumier served a prison term.

Philipon's example was followed all over Europe. In 1841 Punch, in Britain was established which introduced cartoonists such as John Leech (1817-1864) and John Tenniel (1820-1914), Harry Furniss (1854-1925). (Edward) Linley Sambourne (1844-1910), Bernard Partridge (1861-1945), and, Leonard Raven-Hill (1867-1942). In 1848 Kladderadatsch was established in Berlin followed by Die fliegende Blätter in 1845, and later on Punsch and Simplicissimus, in Munich. Simplicissimus introduced cartoonists like Olaf Gulbransson, Bruno Paul, Thomas Theodor Heine, and Blix

Friedrich Wilhelm IV doesn't accept the crown offered by the Frankfurt Parliament. The cartoon shows the allegorical Germania reprimanding the democratic leader Heinrich von Gagern: "What are you whimpering about, you little jack in the box?" to which he replies: "I've carved your little one a crown and he doesn't want it!"

The February 1848 revolution in France, that had overthrew the monarchy of Louis Philippe and established the Second Republic, had also triggered a series of uprisings in South West Germany, spreading unevenly but rapidly to many other German lands and aiming to replace perceived injustices of the old, existing order. Popular grievances, which sustained the insurrections, differed from state to state in accordance with diverse conditions, but they usually included economic deprivation, a desire to abolish seigneurial dues and privileges, resentment of taxes, criticism of officialdom, an expectation of legality and equality before the law, a call for political rights of free assembly, association, speech and conscience, and the demand for a representative government and assembly.

In 1848, National Assembly in Frankfurt was preoccupied with the minutiae of the constitution, including its prefatory declaration of basic rights, but they were, in effect, debating the form which the new Nationalstaat should take.The creation of a nation-state, it was widely believed, required the erection of a suitable political superstructure to suit a pre-existing national culture. The movement of history towards unification seemed inevitable and natural. Friedrich Wilhelm IV linked constitutional and parliamentary concessions to the greater cause of the German nation, but having concurred in the imposition of a conservative Prussian constitution, he proceeded on 28 April 1849 to reject the title of ‘Kaiser of the Germans’, which he had already confided privately had a ‘whorish smell of revolution’.

Metternich flees Vienna, March 1848

The revolutions of 1848 ignited the countries of Europe in a way that would not be repeated until 1989. Violence broke out because legal and parliamentary movements for change were frustrated. The only countries where revolution was avoided were those where adequate concessions were made in time, such as Great Britain, Belgium, and the Netherlands, or where opposition was negligible, such as Russia. Nobilities and middle classes demanded constitutional and representative instead of arbitrary and bureaucratic government. The revolution in France transformed German politics. A mass demonstration at Mannheim on 27 February and a march on Karlsruhe, the capital of Baden forced Grand Duke Leopold to concede a free press, trial by jury, and a people's militia on 29 February, and to appoint liberal ministers on 2 March.

The revolution in Vienna on 13-15 March 1848, as well as the revolution in Paris, helps to explain why Frederick William IV stooped to make concessions.The Lower Austrian Estates, which met on 13 March, were besieged by students and workers, from inside and outside the city walls, to urge them to press for reforms. Finally Metternich, the "last great master of the principle of balance," became the target of angry mobs. Forced to resign, he went into exile in England before returning to Vienna in 1858. He died there a year later.

Der Deutsche Michel bis zum Jahre 1841, after a drawing by R. Sabatky, hand-colored lithograph published in Mannheim, Germany by Korwan.

A sleeping Michel wearing a patchwork shirt with the names of various German states such as Saxony, Baden and Bavaria, is not the government, but the control and exploitation of Michel’s land and goods by the neighbouring nations hinges on his innate drowsiness. They do not put him to sleep, but try to make sure that he stays this way.. His mouth is fastened by a padlock. To his right is the Austrian Chancellor Metternich who is drawing blood from Michel’s arm, the blood turning to gold in the bowl. A bulldog, representing John Bull of England, removes a money purse from his pocket, while a French soldier cuts off his sleeve. Michel’s head is being caressed by a Russian cossack. Above the group is a vignette representing soldiers drilling and marching, a man holding a violin and raising a glass to toast (“Es lebe de Rhein”), a battlefield scene with a man standing with one leg on another man (“Es lebe der deutsche Kraft”), and a large cannon with gun crew. In the clouds, Napoleon can be seen with a spyglass.

A 1843 article in the Berlinische Zeitung had this to say about the cartoon: around “one single figure, which alone is in total passivity, all the others are engaged in the most lively activity, which has no other purpose than to make sure this poor figure remains passive.” In other words, the double meaning of Michel’s sleepiness and the Powers’ efforts to prevent him from waking up was well understood. The cartoon is far from being simply descriptive. Addressed to an audience that was to find itself satirized and shamed for its sleepy absence of patriotic energy required to defend the burgeoning German nation, the image’s purpose was to prompt Michel’s awakening.

Dear Fatherland Be at Peace, The German Michel has awakened

Of all national stereotypes, the German Michel has the most ancient lineage. Indeed Michel predates the second oldest, John Bull (in the History of John Bull, 1727), by almost two centuries and Marianne of France and Uncle Sam of America by almost a further century. This is significant, given the remarkably late emergence of Germany as a nation state in Europe. Initially, Michel stood for the oppressed subject of an authoritarian system. This was well expressed in a cartoon, published in the Munich satirical journal, Leuchtkugeln, in the revolutionary period, featuring Michel and his oppressors. 

The cartoon depicted silhouettes of ‘poor Michel’, with downcast head and limp cap, chained by the combined forces of the ‘system’: throne, altar, military and bureaucracy. The graphic images were interspersed with satiric verses, which point to the (political) moral. The motif of der deutsche Michel as the victim of oppression, who, however, internalises the attitudes of his masters, is omnipresent in the literature and cartoons of the 1840s. It was only in the Wilhelmine era (apart from a brief period of weeks in the summer of 1848, when the German revolutionary troops were fighting the Danes in Schleswig-Holstein), that Michel became identified with the ambitions and resentments of German nationalists.

Napoleon's ill-fated attempt to conquer Russia in 1812 was followed by the consolidation of a powerful alliance against him, consisting of Russia, Prussia, Britain, and Sweden. The allies defeated Napoleon at Leipzig in 1813. A hundred years later "When Germany Awoke: The people and Events of the Wars of Liberation," appeared in 1913 to commemorate the liberation war of 1813. 

Here the awaken German Micheal reminds the French invader of the events of a hundred years ago , and warns him to be gentle since François (perhaps German Army general Hermann von François) can't be irritated. The Cock (US Rooster) had long been part of French national culture, largely because the Latin words for cock and inhabitant of Gaul are similar (Gallus v gallicus). In the Middle Ages it was widely depicted in French churches and is recorded in 14th century Germany in references to France.

The Brave Seven!

Following the outbreak of revolution in Germany in March 1848, two features marked what was a new stage in Michel’s evolution. Firstly, his figure suddenly slimmed down, his pose and gait were transformed, as the erect figure of a typical young German artisan suddenly confronted his oppressors, prince, army and police. Secondly, as reflected for example, in an extended series of cartoons with accompanying text which had begun to appear in 1847 in the Munich journal Leuchtkugeln and continued until the summer of 1848, ‘Michel’ began to attribute his political insignificance to the jealous machinations of Germany’s neighbours. 

These neighbours included both the great powers, France, England and Russia, and also a number of smaller states, such as the Netherlands and also Denmark, whose role in Schleswig-Holstein in the summer of 1848 proved to be such a powerful catalyst of nationalist fervour in the German Confederation.

A German cartoon illustrates what it believed to be the hypocrisy of the British forcing a reluctant China to buy its opium from the Opium Wars of 1839 - 1842.

The first Opium War (1839–42) was between China and Britain, and the second Opium War (1856–60), also known as the Arrow War or the Anglo-French War in China, was fought by Britain and France against China. The Opium Wars arose from China’s attempts to suppress the opium trade. British traders had been illegally exporting opium to China, and the resulting widespread addiction was causing serious social and economic disruption in the country. In 1839 the Chinese government confiscated all opium warehoused at Canton by British merchants. The antagonism between the two sides increased a few days later when some drunken British sailors killed a Chinese villager. 

The British government, which did not trust the Chinese legal system, refused to turn the accused men over to the Chinese courts. Hostilities broke out, and the small British forces were quickly victorious. The Treaty of Nanjing (Nanking), signed Aug. 29, 1842, and the British Supplementary Treaty of the Bogue (Humen), signed Oct. 8, 1843, provided for the payment of a large indemnity by China, cession of five ports for British trade and residence, and the right of British citizens to be tried by British courts. Other Western countries quickly demanded and were given similar privileges.

In this line-up, China is just the dead map to be cut up by the Powers; it has no agency of its own. The US commands center stage and establishes a new obstacle for the Powers: its new trade treaty with the Qing dynasty secured the right to trade over the entire Qing territory. The US now had a vested commercial interest in preventing China from being cut up. In this moment of ultimate weakness, the territorial integrity of China is maintained by the antagonism between the Powers and the Americans. This was to play a significant role in a mechanism that the Qing were able to use skillfully and very successfully.

Following the foreign military intervention in 1900 to lift the siege of the Peking legations by the Boxers and Muslim rebels, the court, which had supported the anti-foreign action, fled Peking. In a dramatic reversal, it accepted the proposal from a number of high Han Chinese officials to implement a wide-ranging “reform of governance” Xinzheng. This included the reform (1902) and later abolishment (1905) of the Imperial Examination System 科舉 (Keju); reforms in the schools and the military; a fully-fledged Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and eventually, the first steps toward a constitution and a parliament. While the government tried hard to keep the public discussion under control, it had no control over the key transcultural contact zones such as Hong Kong, Shanghai or Yokohama, where, since 1901, a veritable media explosion had been taking place that swept newspapers, periodicals and even images into those areas of China that were furthest from these centers. These media quickly abandoned the reluctance still visible in Tse Tsan Tai’s cartoon and took on the court directly.

The Real Trouble Will Come with the ‘Wake’, 1900.

Developing a strategy to deal with a sleeping China was not just a challenge for those committed to the country’s betterment, but also for the Powers, because the newcomers, Russia, Japan, Germany and Italy, all rushed to the table thinking in traditional colonial terms. The option of a partition of China was considered far too risky and too costly for the dominant British and their American allies. A flurry of conferences between 1898 and 1900 was designed to find a consensus for the Powers or to impose certain rules how to deal with China.

The Boxers and their Muslim allies had started the siege of the Peking legations in June 1900. After heavy fighting, a relief contingent consisting of units from different Western countries broke through to the city and eventually overcame the Boxer resistance on August 14. The Manchu Court had already fled. This news did not make it into the August 15 issue of Puck, but the defeat of the Boxers, who had the support from the Court, had been palpable. For all practical purposes, Peking was occupied, the Court was on the run and China was as “dead” as the dragon in this image. The title of the cartoon contains a pun. There had been much talk in the past about the sleeping and awakening of China. Now with the death of the dragon, a “wake” ceremony is called for, but instead of the wake’s participants being in silent mourning, they confront each other fully armed, especially Russia (the bear) and England (the lion). 

The real problem that these Powers face is not the awakening of China—this is a threat from the past—but what will happen during the “wake” after its death. The Powers will try to stop each other from taking a chunk of the dragon. The inscription shows the double nervousness about the awakening and the wake. The face of the dragon is reminiscent of contemporary American posters that denounced Chinese immigrants.[172] The perspective of both image and text is that of the foreign Powers—in this case that of the US eagle—sternly looking on this scene from the top left. There is a danger that the Powers will go to war over this dead giant.

Taking a Neutral Stance 局外中立, 1904.

Russia (on the right) walks off with a preciously adorned horse (Manchuria, part of China’s territory), while Japan (in the middle) looks on in irritation. The Chinese Manchu official kneels in front of the foreign powers with an assurance that he will take a neutral stance in this conflict, which was heading towards war. The Chinese “nation/citizens”, guomin, in the left lower corner are firmly asleep while Russia walks away with their property.

The capitulation of Sedan; Napoleon III Wilhelm I of Prussia

Since 1866, when Prussia had defeated Austria and won the leadership in Germany, Napoleon III of the Second French Empire had longed to crush Prussia, which he considered an upstart power. Meanwhile Bismarck, the chancellor of Prussia, felt that a war was necessary to unify Germany
The Franco-Prussian War, waged between France and the German states under the leadership of Prussia, from July 15, 1870, dramatically changed European history. The rapid and overwhelming victory of Prussia in this conflict made possible the creation of a unified German Empire. Prussian would first fight and destroy the armies of the emperor Napoleon, then the newly raised armies of the Third republic. The war also marked the final step in Germany's rise to the position of a major continental power . Napoleon III surrendered to Wilhelm I, king of Prussia, on Sept. 2, 1870, after the battle at Sedan. The battle marked the decisive defeat of the French in the Franco-Prussian War and led to the fall of the Second French Empire, which was replaced by the Third Republic. As part of the settlement, the territory of Alsace-Lorraine was taken by Germany, which would retain it until after World War I. The war provided a rich range of characters for the caricaturists of that era.

The capitulation of Sedan, Honoré Daumier, 1870

The Capitulation of the French Army at Sedan, September 2, 1870 proved fatal to the French Empire. On Saturday, Count Palikao officially recognized a great disaster, and during a midnight sitting he acknowledged to the Chamber the whole truth, which, on the following morning, was communicated through the Journal Officiel to all Paris. A sitting was ordered for noon on Sunday, and all Saturday night the leaders of parties made their preparations. The idea of Count Palikao was to form a Provisional Government, with himself as its head, and to support the Chamber in assuming the control of affairs. The idea of the Right was to proclaim Napoleon IV., with the Empress as Regent, and the Chamber, protected by Palikao, as the final authority. The idea of General Trochu was to effect a fusion with the Left, turn the National Guards upon the Corps Legislatif, decree the overthrow of the dynasty, dismiss the Chamber, and establish some kind of a Provisional Dictator- ship. On the one side, the troops in Paris were ordered to defend the Legislature ; on the other, the National Guards were ordered to surround it.

Napoleon fell, Russia, Austria, and Italy all arming. It is extremely doubtful, however, if Russia will help a Republic which must sympathize with Poland ; Austria distrusts a State without an army, and Italy seems intent upon taking possession of Rome. The news from Italy is unusually confused and contradictory, but it seems to be certain that the cry throughout Italy is "Rome or a Republic !" that Florentines have been officially warned of a possible transfer of the capital ; that the King has decided on a military occupation of Rome ; and that a considerable army is collecting on the frontier. The Catholic Powers apparently are in no position to interfere, and Prussia, which is not trustworthy about Rome, is too much occupied. There remains England, whose position is as yet scarcely intelligible, unless assurances have been received that Germany will, on territorial questions, be moderate .

Louis Bonaparte Napoleon III and Wilhelm l of Prussia, 1870.

 The two are depicted as drunken buffoons, betraying the moral and spiritual ideals fought for in the French Revolution.

Un Bain de Sang! Napoléon Charles Louis De Frondat, 1870

The German Emperor, Wilhelm I, sitting in a tub of blood with the head of the French Emperor Napoleon III. The title reads; Bloodbath, you see it will drown both of us!

This Kladderadatsch cartoon by Wilhelm Scholz is entitled “Good Advice is Costly” --Guter Rath is theuer.

The caption reads: “Bismarck (leading Alsace and Lorraine): Dear Reichstag, we have the two lads back again, but now tell me where and how we should accommodate them!” While Bavaria would have happily taken over custodianship of the two provinces seized from France in 1871, this cartoon correctly foresees a struggle for authority between Germania (representing Germany’s martial origins) and the Reichstag, whose members saw an opportunity to import newer, liberal traditions into the governance of the territories. Agreement on a constitution for Alsace-Lorraine was achieved very belatedly in Imperial Germany – in 1911

Alexandre Dumas, André Gill, Cover of La Lune, December 2, 1866

Dumas' caricature is from The Man of the Day series by André Gill, who became known for his work for the weekly four-sheet newspaper La Lune, edited by Francis Polo. Gill worked for La Lune from 1865 to 1868. When La Lune was banned, he worked for the periodical L'Éclipse from 1868 to 1876. Gill also drew for famous periodical Le Charivari. In 1823, Alexandre Dumas, who was of a mixed race aristocratic background, became the clerk of the Duc d`Orléans -- later King Louis Philippe, because of his elegant handwriting. But, he was liberal and had republican sympathies, as he greeted the Revolution of 1848 with enthusiasm and even ran as a candidate for the Assembly. After the coup d'état in 1851 and the seizure of power by Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte, Napoleon III, Dumas escaped to Brussels, as he was not looked upon favorably by the newly elected President. Dumas supported Victor Hugo who was also a liberal opponent of Napoleon III and was exiled by him.

The late 1840s and early 1850s were a period of feverish political change. The revolution of 1848 felled the Orleans monarchy and led to the creation of the Second Republic—which, in turn, led to the brief elected presidency, and subsequent installation as emperor, of Napoleon III. In the 1850s, as the old Paris of narrow streets and ramshackle houses gave way to the broad boulevards and uniform apartment blocks planned by Napoleon III and carried out by Georges-Eugène Haussmann, Charles Baudelaire wrote an epitaph for the city he remembered:
Paris changes! but nothing of my melancholy as lifted. New palaces, scaffoldings, blocks, old outer districts: for me everything becomes allegory and my cherished memories weigh like rocks. 
Then too, before the Louvre an image presses down on me: I recall my great swan with his crazy movements, as if in exile, ridiculous, sublime, gnawed by ceaseless craving! and think of 
you, Andromache (from a great spouse’s arms, fallen — mere chattel — under superb Pyrrhus’s thumb) bent in ecstasy over an empty tomb, Hector’s widow, alas! wife of Helenus! 
I think of a negress, wasted, consumptive, trudging the mud, wild eyed, looking for faraway palms of glorious Africa behind an immense wall of fog; of whoever has lost what can never be found again, ever! of those steeped in tears, suckling Pain like a kind she-wolf; of starved orphans dried like flowers! So in the forest of my mind’s exile an old Memory sounds a clear note on the horn! I think of sailors lost on desert islands, of prisoners, of the vanquished! . . . and of still others!
— Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal, “Tableaux parisiens

In 1863 Charles Baudelaire wrote three essays on caricature, ‘ On the Essence of Laughter ’, ‘ Some French Caricaturists ’, and ‘ Some Foreign Caricaturists ’, in which he provided perhaps the first sustained defense of the value of caricature as a serious art, worthy of study in its own right. From the theory of the comic formulated in De l'essence du rire to his discussions of Daumier, Goya, Hogarth, Cruikshank, Bruegel, Grandville, Gavarni, Charlet, and many others, Baudelaire suggested that exaggeration reveals what lies beneath the surface of society. It needs to be exposed so that the ‘darker workings of human nature can be dealt with’  ‘The painter [...] will be he who can extract from the present-day life it’s epic quality, and make us see and understand [...] how great and poetic we are in our in our cravats and patent leather boots’Baudelaire divided caricature into two types: i). the significative comic who parodied human behavior in polite society whose reliance was on a mere observation of social facts, who is in effect honouring, instead of challenging the status quo, and; ii). the absolute comic , who is driven by the grotesque, revealing a malicious intent, who relied upon the hysterical laughter, that is more interesting, and makes a stronger point  . ‘He locates its origin in what he calls satanic laughter, or the feeling of superiority one gets when laughing at the misfortune of others’

For Baudelaire the art of modern life with its characteristics; grotesque, ironic, violent, farcical, fantastic, and fleeting  reveals what lies beneath the surface of society. This  caricatural aesthetic needs to be exposed so that the ‘darker workings of human nature can be dealt with’.  Fascinated by  the dualism and ambiguity of laughter, in relation to human types that  he viewed  as allegorical figures full of the experience of modern times that could  be represented by a pictorial shorthand, of symbolic meaning and moral value, he  insisted that this representation has radical implications for such emblems of modernity as the city and   the flâneur who roams the streets.
‘The modern city is the space of the comic, a kind of caricature, presenting  the flâneur  , like the laugher, with an image of his own dualism, self- ignorance, and otherness’.

The modern city is the space of the comic, a kind of caricature, presenting the flaneur with an image of dualism, one's position as subject and object, implicated in the same urban experiences one seems to control. This idea that one’s experience of life, of existing in a place and contributing to the allegory of a culture invests the idea of modernity with a give and take. If you are both the laugher and the object of laughter you prevent the ‘subjective construction and appropriation of the world’ that is referred to as modernism.
In this vain, the theory of the comic invests the idea of modernity with reciprocity, one's status as laughter and object of laughter, thus preventing the subjective construction and appropriation of the world that has so often been linked with the project of modernism.

‘Comic art reflects what Walter Benjamin later defined as Baudelairean allegory, at once representing and revealing the alienation of modern experience’. For Baudelaire the caricature and the grotesque are not only a visual phenomenon but one of allegory, forms of endless combinations and implausible hybrids. It might be possible, as Walter Benjamin suggested after Baudelaire, that allegory, could take over the role of abstract thought .   An allegory is a narrative which has both a literal meaning and a representative one. There are two main types of allegory: i). the historical or political, in which historical persons and events are referred to; and; ii). the allegory of ideas, in which abstract concepts and the story has a didactic purpose. Baudelaire   transforms the dualism of the comic into a peculiarly modern unity--- the doubling of the comic artist enacted for the benefit of the audience, the self-generating and self-reflexive experience of the flaneur in a ''communion'' with the crowd.

Le Chevalier de la Mort (The knight of death), caricature of the German Kaiser Wilhelm 1871. The objects of quite a number of biting caricatures by French artists were the Prussian efforts to become one of the Great Powers in Europe and Bismarck's endeavors to unite the German Reich. The goals of the German politicians were to be revealed with physiognomic and phrenological means.

L'Homme A La Boule, Jules Renard, 1871. Count Otto von Bismarck balances on a the world with one spurred foot entering France, and wearing only his underpants which are marked with the German imperial eagle.

Having secured the creation of a united German Empire following the successful outcome of the Franco-Prussian War in 1871, Bismarck was keen to consolidate Germany's position via the construction of alliances with other major powers.In so doing Bismarck was acknowledging that France would remain a threat, one set upon avenging her humiliating defeat in ceding Alsace and Lorraine to Germany at the conclusion of the 1870-71 war.

Bismarck set about the establishment of numerous alliances with, in 1873, the creation of the Three Emperors League. This agreement tied Germany, Austria-Hungary and Russia to each other's aid in time of war. The agreement however only lasted until 1878 with Russia's withdrawal; Bismarck then agreed a new Dual Alliance with Austria-Hungary in 1879. The Courts of Austria-Hungary, of Germany, and of Russia, animated by an equal desire to consolidate the general peace by an understanding intended to assure the defensive position of their respective States, have come into agreement on certain questions

Bismarck offers slices of Africa to European powers at the Berlin conference.

Bismarck’s life’s work was the unification, through conquest and treaty, of an archipelago of German-speaking states (with the conspicuous exception of Austria). In 1870 Prussia humiliated France in the Franco-German War. Bismarck’s army took Emperor Napoleon III prisoner and starved Paris into submission. The Prussians did a triumphal march through the streets of Paris. Bismarck was on a roll. In 1871 the hold-out states of southern Germany joined a Prussian-led federation with Kaiser Wilhelm I as head of state. In many ways this prosperous new country was authoritarian, but it was also a democracy with active political parties. 

Even in the flush of triumph, however, the master politician saw problems ahead. As Prussia expanded and became Germany, it lost its original character – a highly-centralised, largely Protestant state. Catholics – mostly in the Rhineland, southern Germany and in the Polish-speaking East – now constituted about a third of the new nation. Bismarck believed that he needed to press hard for unity of language, religion and education, drawing all of society under government control.

 "Between Berlin and Rome" from Kladderadatsch, 16 May 1875.
The caption reads: "The last move was certainly very unpleasant for me; but that doesn't yet mean the game is lost. I have one more very fine move up my sleeve!" "It will also be the last, and then you are mated in a few moves - at least for Germany."

Although Prussia was an authoritarian society without a bill of rights, it was not a dictatorship. Harsh restrictions on Catholics were passed democratically after debates in a parliament. Prussia’s progressive intellectual elite supported something which was clearly unjust: suppression of freedom of religion in the name of protecting freedom of thought. In 1864 Pope Pius IX published the Syllabus, a denunciation of the errors of modern thought, and in 1870 the First Vatican Council proclaimed papal infallibility. The infallibility was interpreted as an attack on the principle of secular government. To Bismarck, the troubled reign of Pius IX seemed like a golden moment to assert control. In July 1871 the assault began with the abolition of the Catholic bureau of worship and control of government-Church relations was handed over to Protestant bureaucrats. In November Bismarck passed the Kanzelparagraph (the Pulpit Law) which severely penalised criticism of the government by the clergy. In March 1872, all schools were placed under government control. In July 1872 the Jesuits (and later other religious orders) were expelled or interned. In December 1872 he broke off diplomatic relations with the Vatican. The pressure on Catholics intensified in May 1873 with the so-called May Laws (or Falk Laws). These were four drastic measures designed to crush the hierarchy and subject the Church totally to government control. At the same time, Bismarck fostered relations with the Old Catholics and tried to establish them as an alternative to the Catholic hierarchy. 

In 1875 the fight intensified. A “Breadbasket Bill” was passed which suspended all grants to dioceses if the clergy had not complied with the new laws. All religious orders were dissolved, except socially useful ones involved in nursing and social work. Civil marriage was made obligatory. All Church property was confiscated and ownership was transferred to parish laymen acting as trustees. By 1878 the Catholic Church appeared to be in a sorry state. Most of its bishops were in exile; thousands of parishes had no priest. It had lost most of its property and power. But in fact Bismarck’s Kulturkampf had run out of steam and most of his measures were about to be dismantled. 

Although Papal infallibility had not been popular with many German Catholics, nearly all of them closed ranks and presented a united front. In 1870 Catholics formed the Centre Party under the leadership first of Hermann von Mallinckrodt and then of Ludwig Windthorst, two politicians who were remarkable for their eloquence and shrewdness. Their party grew rapidly into a major political force.

While Chamberlain cries out that the Indian cloth of the royal mantle is on fire - a reference to the outbreak of nationalist violence in India in 1897 - two English officers gleefully stamp it out. Britain's army was mindful of how events spiraled out of country in the lead up to the 1857 Mutiny and decided to become more proactive in using force with even minor political disturbances.

After revolting against the unpopular regime of King Otto I in October 1862, the question who would succeed that unfortunate monarch on the Greek throne had been discussed with great ardour in Britain – not least since it was likely to recalibrate the European balance of powers in the intractable Eastern Question. But while Queen Victoria’s second son, Prince Alfred (1844-1900) had been ruled out by the logics of international power politics, the Greek people had fallen for his middy’s uniform and simple dignity, when he had visited Greece and the British protectorate of the Ionian Islands on one of his many cruises in 1859. Prince Alfred never had the slightest inclination to become King of Greece. He loved his life as a midshipman in the Royal Navy, and had before him the prospect of inheriting the small, but idyllic duchy of his childless German uncle.

A veritable “Alfred movement” swept the country, equating the “Sailor Prince” with the liberal protection of British super power and in Greece’s first modern referendum, they elected the unsuspecting Prince as their sovereign. Queen Victoria’s simple reaction that it could “never be” (15 November 1862) “on family and political grounds” decided the matter. Once the Greek throne had been rejected in Alfred's name, it was offered to various other minor princes. Among them was his very own uncle, Duke Ernst, who appeared to be the next best choice given that no son of Queen Victoria’s was available. As it turned out, Duke Ernst’s conditions were untenable (he wanted to remain Duke of Coburg and install a regency in Greece). But even though the storm passed, both he and Prince Alfred remained alert to the uncomfortable necessity of making arrangements for the future.

After having been advertised to an embarrassing number of princelings, the throne of Greece was bartered away to an inexperienced younger Prince of Denmark in March 1863. King George I, whose main advantages were actually his close relationship with the Prince of Wales and the British gift of the Ionian Islands. In August 1893, Prince Alfred’s dynastic fate finally caught up with him. Barely missed by his English countrymen, and tepidly welcomed by his German subjects, he followed the coffin of his uncle to the dull idyll of Coburg. He died there, only seven years later, from the consequences of excessive alcohol consumption and a licentious lifestyle.

The succession of Queen Victoria by her son King Edward did little to stem the flow of antagonistic commentary on the British role in the Boer War. This cartoon shows"Baby" Edward, a male version of his squat mother, viewing the blood oozing from the South African section of his new toy, the world.

"Cry 'Havoc!' and let slip the dogs of war." This words are said by Mark Antony to Caesar's corpse in Shakespeare's Julius Cesar. English foreign policy was described as "splendid isolationism", a policy of remaining aloof from alliances with other powers while exercising its influence to encourage a balance of power on the continent. So long as the continental powers checked each other, England was secure on the other side of the Channel.

Throughout much of the 19th century, Russia seemed to pose the greatest challenge to English imperial interests. Periodic Russian expansion towards the Balkans and the Straits of the Dardanelles (the Ottoman Empire) posed a potential threat to the English trade route to India. English and Russian imperial interests also clashed in Persia, in Afghanistan and in northern China. There were also conflicting imperialistic goals between England and France in Africa .

War erupted in 1877 when the Bulgars rose up against their Turkish rulers and Russia intervened on their side. The Russians defeated the Turks, and would have driven them almost entirely out of Europe had the other great powers not intervened. England threatened war against Russia, and Bismarck, concerned that Austria and Germany might be drawn in, convened a peace conference. In 1878, at the Congress of Berlin, the Russians were coerced into relinquishing their gains in the recent war with Turkey. Bulgaria's independence was recognized and the Austrian government made a claim for Bosnia.

Bernard Gillam was born in England in 1859. A contemporary of Nast's who drew for the rival Puck magazine. During the 1884 presidential campaign, he did a parody of a famous painting by Gerôme, with Blaine being exposed before Chicago pols with his body tattooed with all his various scandals. This cartoon is believed to have played a significant role in the victory of Grover Cleveland in that election. Blaine threatened to sue but was persuaded by his political friends to back down. Ironically, Gillam was a Republican who voted for Blaine in 1884.

The United States had treaty rights to establish a naval base on the island of Samoa, Presient Cleveland reacted strongly when Germany tried to install a puppet monarch. President dispatched three warships to Samoan waters, a bellicose action that led to a determination by Bismarck that something be done to head off the threat of a confrontation between Germany and the United States. The Germans suspended hostilities against Mataafa, and a new conference on Samoa was called to meet at Berlin in late April. Cleveland and Bayard accepted Bismarck's proposal for a tripartite conference which resulted in a tripartite protectorate over the islands signed by Germany, Britain, and the United States.

Gunboat Diplomacy, By Raven Hill, 'Punch', September 2, 1911 Britain and France projected strength in their entent cordiale. The Kaiser backed down, and the French occupied Marocco. In exchange, France relinquished a chunk of the congo to Germany.

Dropping the Pilot, Sir John Tenniel, Punch, March 1890. German Emperor Wilhelm II looks anxiously at the departing of his Chancellor Otto von Bismarck. The reference to Bismarck as a "pilot" was from an earlier cartoon "The Champion Pilot of the age" from the Puck magazine in which, the cartoonist Joseph Keppler depicted Bismarck on a ship, having brought it out to the high seas. In the background, the cartoonist depicted the French ship of state in distress. This symbolized Bismarck's accomplishment of forming the German Kaiserreich by means of the Franco-Prussian War.

Cartoon by John Tenniel in *Punch* before war broke out: a Cossack threatens the Turkish sultan (July 23, 1853)

By 1850 Russian hopes of turning Turkey into a protectorate ran high. Had Russia succeeded, it would probably have displaced Britain as the strongest international power. Fear of Russian expansion was almost an obsession among some British policy-makers, including Lord Palmerston and his loyal supporter Sir Stratford Canning, the British ambassador in Constantinople. Canning had spent most of the previous 20 years encouraging reform in Turkey so that it could resist Russia more effectively. The Russians discouraged change, supporting the traditionalists and anti-reformists at the Ottoman court. One Turkish ambassador was told by the Tsar that the Turks should not bother to learn European languages

Sultan Abdülaziz was welcomed with great interest in Paris by Napoleon III . From Paris the Sultan went directly to London, where his party was welcomed by the Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) and was received with great applause. The European journey” took 46 days between 21 June 1867 and 7 August 1867.

Abdul Aziz Sultan of Ottoman empire. Girls on his knees. 'Ote-toi de la que je m'y mette'. Vanity Fair, 1869.

Sultan Abdul Aziz succeeded his brother Abdul Mejid in 1861 and ruled until 1876. The urging of France, Britain, and Austria enabled the progressive ministers Mehmet ‘Ali Pasha and Mehmed Fuad Pasha to reorganize the High Council to improve justice and education. In 1868 Midhat Pasha, was appointed president of a Council of State that included Christians to prepare a budget and promote reforms. Husain Awni Pasha worked on education in order to improve the army. Nonetheless Abdul Aziz was reactionary and autocratic. Whereas the Tanzimat had aimed at justice, now the young Turks wanted liberty and constitutional government. The first political party in Turkish history called the Patriotic Alliance or Young Ottoman Society was formed in 1865 as a secret society based on the Carbonari in Italy. In Namik Kemal who came from a family of Ottoman officials, began working for the Institute of Translation and translated and published an open letter to the Sultan by the Egyptian prince Mustafa Fazil demanding a constitution. Exiled to the provinces, Namik Kemal went to London and then to Paris with some other young radicals. In 1867 Abdul Aziz was the first sultan to visit Paris and London, where he came across these radicals. In June 1868 Kemal and Ziya Pasha began publishing their Turkish newspaper Hurriyet, which means freedom.

Namik Kemal translated French works into Turkish, and he wrote a series of “Letters on Constitutional Regime” to expound his liberal philosophy. He believed in the political sovereignty of the people and that the rights of individuals should be based on justice. He argued that Islam is compatible with republican government, and he proposed a council of state to draft bills and administer the laws, a national assembly to legislate and control the budget, and a senate to moderate the legislative body and the executive power by protecting the liberties of the people. Kemal argued that the superiority of modern civilization could no longer be doubted, and he urged Muslims to have faith in liberty and progress. He was the first Turkish writer to point out how the West had penetrated their economy, and he criticized the current financial, administrative, and educational conditions. Although he wanted to apply Western science, technology, economy, press, and education, he criticized the Tanzimat legal reforms for undermining the Muslim community. He argued that adopting the separation of state from religion was a serious error that opened the way for European interference. He became a patriotic romantic and urged an Islamic constitution. His patriotic drama Vatan (Fatherland) portrayed the heroic defense of Silistria and was performed at Istanbul in 1873. The audience was so moved by the play that the first three performances were followed by shouting and public demonstrations, causing Sultan Abdul Aziz to close the play, ban Kemal’s newspaper, and deport him to Cyprus for three years.

Mehmed Fuad died in 1869, and after the death of Mehmet ‘Ali in 1871 Sultan Abdul Aziz felt he was free from the reformers and could pursue his absolutist tendencies. He made his ministers directly responsible to him instead of to the grand vizier. He emulated the European luxuries he had observed and spent money building ironclad warships and railroads. In twenty years the Ottoman debt had risen from £4,000,000 to £200,000,000. More than half of the empire’s revenues were now going to pay its charges. In 1873 drought in Anatolia led to famine, and many taxes could no longer be collected. Tax farming, which had been declared abolished in the reforms of 1839 and 1856, was once again banned. A bad harvest and extortions for taxes erupted into insurrection in Herzegovina in June 1875 and spread to Bosnia, causing civil war between Muslims and Christians. Abdülaziz was deposed by his ministers on May 30, 1876, his death a few days later was attributed to suicide.

“The Turk and the Christians”, The Greco-Turkish War, W. A. Rogers .
The Thirty Days’ War, took place against a background of growing Greek concern over conditions in Crete, which was under Turkish domination and where relations between the Christians and their Muslim rulers had been deteriorating steadily. The outbreak in 1896 of rebellion on Crete, fomented in part by the secret Greek nationalistic society called Ethniki Etairia, appeared to present Greece with an opportunity to annex the island. By the beginning of 1897, large consignments of arms had been sent to Crete from Greece.

On January 21 the Greek fleet was mobilized, and in early February Greek troops landed on the island, and union with Greece was proclaimed. The following month, however, the European powers imposed a blockade upon Greece to prevent assistance being sent from the mainland to the island. They took this step to prevent the disturbance from spreading to the Balkans. Thwarted in their attempt to assist their compatriots in Crete, the Greeks sent a force, commanded by Prince Constantine, to attack the Turks in Thessaly (April). By the end of April, however, the Greeks, who were inadequately prepared for war, had been overwhelmed by the Turkish army, which had recently been reorganized under German supervision. The Greeks then yielded to pressure from the European powers, withdrew their troops from Crete, and accepted an armistice on the mainland (May 20, 1897).

A peace treaty, concluded on December 4, compelled Greece to pay the Turks an indemnity, to accept an international financial commission that would control Greek finances, and to yield some territory in Thessaly to Turkey. Subsequently, the Turkish troops also left Crete, which had been made an international protectorate, and an autonomous government under Prince George, the second son of the Greek king, was formed there (1898). Crete was finally ceded to Greece by the Treaty of London (1913), which ended the First Balkan War.

Peace Rumors. Let Us Have (A) Peace (Piece). [The Turk wishes he was Christian]. Thomas Nast,Wood engraving, 1877. Published by Harper's Weekly. June 30, 1877.

The cartoon , accuses Europe of supporting Russia during the Russo-Turkish War simply because they wanted a piece of the Ottoman Empire. It was not a far cry from the truth considering how the empire was broken up following the end of the war. Nor was it an illusion that the Russian Czar had initiated warfare in order to liberate orthodox Christians from the Islamic empire. In fact, this notion was highly publicized in the Russian news. In this cartoon the Sultan of Turkey can do nothing but watch as the European nations cut up the map depicting his territory - England is shown through John Bull (foreground, back turned), Otto von Bismarck represents Germany (left), and Alexander II represents Russia (right). The figure between Russia and Germany might be Patrice de MacMahon, Duke of Magenta and President of France.

By the end of the 18th Century the situation of the Ottoman Empire was deplorable. Nearly all the pachas of Asia were no longer bound to the Sultan except by some tributes and formulae of respect; the Persians and the Kurds menaced the eastern frontiers; the Mamelukes tyrannised over Egypt; Syria was in open revolt; the pachas and peoples of Turkey in Europe appeared to be no better subjected than those of Asia.The implications of the decline of Ottoman power and the vulnerability and attractiveness of the empire's vast holdings became collectively known to European diplomats in the nineteenth century as "the Eastern Question." In 1853 Tsar Nicholas I of Russia described the Ottoman Empire as "the sick man of Europe." The problem from the viewpoint of European diplomacy was how to dispose of the empire in such a manner that no one power would gain an advantage at the expense of the others and upset the political balance of Europe.

Triple Alliance was secret agreement between Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy formed in May 1882 and renewed periodically until World War I. Germany and Austria-Hungary had been closely allied since 1879. Germany had allied itself with Russia and Austria-Hungary in the Three Emperors' League, but Austria-Hungary and Russia were not the best of friends, partly because they were at odds over the Balkans and partly because Russia represented the Pan-Slavic movement, whose program threatened the very existence of Austria-Hungary.

After the slow death of the Three Emperors' League that lasted until 1890 Germany refused to renew its reinsurance treaty with Russia, and Russia in consequence sought a rapprochement with France. Bismarck negotiated the Triple Alliance with Austria-Hungary and Italy. Because of the long-standing hostility of Austria-Hungary toward Russia, however, he also negotiated a secret "Reinsurance Treaty" with the Russians. According to the terms of the treaty, Germany and Russia would remain neutral in the event that either nation was at war. France and Britain were bitter colonial rivals, and Bismarck counted on this rivalry to prevent any French-British co-operation. In an effort to maintain cordial relations with the British, he also refused to involve Germany in any colonial ventures.

In 1890, Kaiser Wilhelm II dismissed Bismarck and within five years had abandoned Bismarck’s carefully constructed diplomatic policies. He did not renew the Reinsurance Treaty with Russia and embarked upon an ambitious colonial policy and expansion of the German navy that provoked British hostility. By 1895, France and Russia had formed a military alliance. In 1905, Britain and France, both alarmed by Germany’s increasing naval power and aggressive colonial policies, negotiated the "Entente Cordiale." This treaty included provisions for military co-operation in the event that either signatory entered a war with Germany. Europe was then dominated by two power blocs, the Triple Entente: France, Russia and Britain, and the Triple Alliance: Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy.

When World War I broke out in the summer of 1914, Italy declared itself neutral in the conflict, despite its membership in the so-called Triple Alliance alongside Germany and Austria-Hungary since 1882. Over the course of the months that followed, Italy and its leaders weighed their options; wooed by both sides, they carefully considered how to gain the greatest benefit from participation in the war.

The decision to join the fray on the side of the Allies was based largely on the assurances Italy received in the Treaty of London, signed in April 1915. By its terms, Italy would receive the fulfillment of its national dream: control over territory on its border with Austria-Hungary stretching from Trentino through the South Tyrol to Trieste. In addition, the Allies promised the Italians parts of Dalmatia and numerous islands along Austria-Hungary's Adriatic coast; the Albanian port city of Vlore (Italian: Valona) and a central protectorate in Albania; and territory from the Ottoman Empire.

The Ottoman Empire joined the Central Powers to form the Triple Alliance with the signing of the August 1914 Turco-German Alliance. The Ottomans had lost territory in Crimea to Russia, and Russia was encroaching in the Caucasus. In the Balkan wars she had lost Rumania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Montenegro, Albania and Greece. The Ottoman Empire also was losing territory in North Africa, with Italy taking Libya in the Italo-Turkish War of 1911-1912. Through the assistance of the Turks, the Germans threatened an offensive against the Suez Canal, which was abortive, but served the purpose of requiring British preparation for its defense. Germany saw more than mere military advantage in the Turkish adventure. She was reaching out into the British world which stretched across Persia towards India

The British had to offset the threat of Germans, and with Russians in retreat from the Balkan and losing their faith in the Allies, they needed to bring Italy in on the side of the Allies. Italy had joined (reluctantly) with Germany in the so-called Triple Alliance out of a fear of France, which had formed an alliance with Britain that made Britain responsible for the mutual defense of the English Channel, and freed the French fleet to concentrate in the Mediterranean, possibly against Italy. Italy was worried about the intentions of a victorious Austria Hungary, from which she had taken Lombardy and Venice in the 19th century. So when Britain and France offered her Tyrol and Trieste from Austria, She jumped at the bait and switched sides

This German cartoon is making a jest at the Triple Entente. It shows Germans 'cooking' the English, French and the Russians. The Triple Entente among Great Britain, France, and Russia which was formed during the first decade of 20th century, and led to the outbreak of the First World War was the personal creation of King Edward VII of Britain. It was King Edward who engineered the Entente Cordiale between Britain and France in 1903-04, and who then went on to seal the fateful British-Russian Entente of 1907. It was King Edward who massaged Theodore Roosevelt and other American leaders to help bring about the U.S . -U. K. "special relationship," which dates from the time of his reign.

Bulgaria declares its independence and its prince Ferdinand is named Tsar, Austria-Hungary, in the person of Emperor Francis Joseph, annexes Bosnia and Herzegovina, while the Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid II looks on helplessly.
Sultan Abdul Hamid II, born in 1842 and ascending to throne on 31 August 1876 following his brother, Murad V, who was deposed because of early symptoms of mental illness, named Midhat Pasha as Grand Vizier, who wrote the Ottoman Constitution. It recognised the Sultan a caliph, guardian of the Islamic faith and sovereign of all Muslim subjects in 1876. All subjects, regardless of faith or belief were named Ottomans (Osmanlı). Amongst other things, the constitution provided equality before the law for subjects regardless of religion, Christians were able to work for state authorities, security of property was assured, sanctity of life was ensured, vassals were banned, and a free press was implemented, as were reforms of a social, cultural and administrative nature.

However, Midhat Pasha was deposed, arrested and exiled in 1877. The Sultan took side with the Old Turks, under whose influence the parliament was dissolved in 1878. In 1908, the Sultan escaped a plot against his life  only by chance, in which 28 people were killed in front of Yildiz mosque.In 1908 when after a meeting between Tsar Nicholas and the English King Edward VII in Reval, there were talks of possible plans by the European powers to divide up the Ottoman Empire. Shortly after this meeting, there was an uprising in Macedonia and the Turkish military units gradually aligned themselves on the side of the Young Turks, to which the Albanian soldiers also aligned, having been the regime’s main supporters. In July 1908, the Young Turk military units and their allies forced Sultan Abdul Hamid II to restore the constitution of 1876 and parliament.
Bulgaria took advantage of the weakened Ottoman Empire after the Young Turk Revolution and on 5 October 1908,prince Ferdinand declared Bulgaria’s independence in contravention of a number of points of the Treaty of Berlin, which stated that north Bulgaria would become an independent principality under the sovereignty of the Sultan, and that the southern part of Bulgaria would have a Christian ruler with a statute subject to inspection by an international commission. Austria-Hungary did not oppose Bulgaria’s act, instead taking advantage of the step to annex Bosnia and Herzegovina.

 Student protesters and demonstrators chanting “Long Live Crete, Long Live Greece” and Sultan Abdul Hamid II   advises:  "Gentlemen, Students, the Great Turk can very well respond: Be concerned about what is happening at your own borders!". He refers to German treatment of Alsace and Lorraine, Ėdouard Pépin, Le Grelot (No. 1351, Paris) 28 February 1897
Sultan Abdul Hamid II wiping his bloody sword on the  Constitution, D'ostoya, L’Assiette au Beurre 29 August 1908

Reshad Efendi, proclaimed as Sultan Mehmed V and his deposed brother Abdul Hamid II, Charles Léandre, Le Rire, 15 May 1909

The Young Turks Dispose of the Body of Abdul-Hamid
In 1908, Sultan Abdulhamid II was overthrown as a result of a military coup orchestrated by the Young Turks movement ending his 33 years long reign. In the next ten years following his abdication, the Ottoman Empire was torn apart. Most of the Young Turks had been sent for education to Europe, mostly France. The Young Turks movement originated in 1865, when Ebüzziya Tevfik, an Ottoman intellectual, and six of his friends met up at Yenikoy and continued to the Belgrade Forest. The aim of this movement was to ‘‘take the empire from the Old Ottomans (referring to the Sultan) and fix up their politics and policies’’. The key members of this movement were Cemil Topuzlu, Dr. Marko Pasa, Emanuel Karasu and Talat Pasa. They pursued Pan-Turanian goals in order to consolidate Turkish rule in the remaining territories of the Ottoman Empire and to expand the state into the so-called Turanian lands including Azerbaijan, and Turkmenistan. 

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, The Multiple Dictator, Mavi Boncuk, Punch, November 7 1923
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk has been elected the President of the new Turkish Republic. Atatürk was already president of the Assembly. President of the Cabinet and President of the Popular Party

"Towards the Beykoz conference. Pasha: What's up Kosti the soupman, where are you going with your stuff? Kosti the soupman: to the new conference, to play my puppet.", by Sedat Simavi (1896-1953) showing Constantine I of Greece and Mustafa Kemal, leader of the Turkish forces of Anatolia. July 1922
The state of Turkey was headed by Mustafa Kemal’s People’s Party, which later became the Republican People’s Party. The end of the War of Independence brought new administration to the region, but also brought new problems considering the demographic reconstruction of cities and towns, many of which had been abandoned. The Greco-Turkish War left many of the settlements plundered and in ruins.

After the Balkan Wars, Greece had almost doubled its territory, and the population of the state had risen from approximately 3.7 million to 4.8 million. With this newly annexed population, the proportion of non-Greek minority groups in Greece rose to 13%, and following the end of the First World War, it had increased to 20%. Most of the ethnic populations in these annexed territories were Muslim, but were not necessarily Turkish in ethnicity. This is particularly true in the case of ethnic Albanians who inhabited the Çamëria region of Albania.

The 1923 population exchange between Greece and Turkey  stemmed from the "Convention Concerning the Exchange of Greek and Turkish Populations" signed at Lausanne, Switzerland, on 30 January 1923, by the governments of Greece and Turkey. It involved approximately 2 million people (around 1.3 million Anatolian Greeks and 500,000 Muslims in Greece), most of whom were forcibly made refugees and de jure denaturalized from their homelands.

The New Turkey, 'The Dallas News', 1922
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk proclaims the abolition of the Ottoman Empire and the establishment of the new Turkish Republic.

The elite members of the Imperial Club show little enthusiasm for their new member. The cartoonist pokes fun at the Japanese's inappropriate mix of old and new attire: full western frock coat combined with traditional wooden geta on his feet, umbrella held awkwardly under the arm; buck-toothed grin and slitted eyes are easily identifiable racist stereotypes.

One aspect that particularly rankled the Japanese was the blatant way Russia and her henchmen in the Intervention played the race card. It may not have been coincidental that right at this time, a great deal of literature about the "Yellow Peril" found its way into print.The Germans were among the most active and inventive purveyors of the Yellow Peril myth; the term "Yellow Peril" was coined by Kaiser Wilhelm himself. The Kaiser's feelings on race are on record and consistent; he also bandied about the terms "Black Peril" (black Africans) and "Slav Peril" to undergird the theory that the Reich was encircled by enemies, justifying ever-greater military expenditures.

It is said that politics makes strange bedfellows, and in the wake of Russia's duplicity in the Tripartite Intervention, Great Britain reached out to Japan. Japan's capital ships had been built in Britain and many of her leading naval commanders studied in British naval academies and served with the British fleet. So it was that in 1902 Britain signed her first ever foreign alliance: the Anglo-Japanese Pact of 1902. This was certainly aimed at Russia, Britain's rival in the "Great Game"

Emperor of Japan and his British and American well-wishers according to a Russian cartoon.
At the beginning of the Russo-Japanese War, no one outside Japan had envisaged a Russian defeat. Indeed, the very existence of the Tennō’s empire appeared endangered. The Japanese victory, however, was immediately recognized as a turning point in world history. For the first time in modern history an Asian nation had defeated a European great power. Japan immediately became an important actor in world politics. The impact of the war took on a regional and global character, opening the way to a new constellation of powers and becoming a prelude to World War I.

The Russians had entered Manchuria region during the Sino-Japanese War of 1894–95 and, along with Germany and France. This was part of the “Triple Intervention” that forced Japan to give up its demands for ports in South Manchuria and the Liaodong Peninsula in the wake of its victory in China. Russia moved into the area and took control of Port Arthur, a warm water port with strategic and commercial significance. A Japanese attempt to stage a coup in adjacent Korea was thwarted in part by the Russian presence in the region, and the two nations’ divergent interests appeared more and more likely to clash.
In 1904, the Japanese attacked the Russian fleet at Port Arthur before the formal declaration of war was received in Moscow, surprising the Russian navy and earning an early victory. Over the course of the next year, the two forces clashed in Korea and the Sea of Japan, with the Japanese scoring significant, but costly, victories. War casualties were high on both sides. At the battle over Mukden, the Russians lost 60,000 soldiers and the Japanese lost 41,000 soldiers. The military costs were high as well. A Russian fleet made the long trip from the Baltic Sea around Africa and India, only to be half destroyed by the Japanese upon its arrival in Northeast Asia. By 1905, the combination of these losses and the economic cost of financing the war led both countries to seek an end to the war.

The Japanese asked U.S. President Roosevelt to negotiate a peace agreement, and representatives of the two nations met in Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 1905. For the sake of maintaining the balance of power and equal economic opportunity in the region, Roosevelt preferred that the war end on terms that left both Russia and Japan a role to play in Northeast China. Though excited by the Japanese military victories, Roosevelt worried about the consequences to American interests if Japan managed to drive Russia out entirely.

The Treaty ultimately gave Japan control of Korea and much of South Manchuria, including Port Arthur and the railway that connected it with the rest of the region, along with the southern half of Sakhalin Island; Russian power was curtailed in the region, but it was not required to pay Japan’s war costs. Because neither nation was in a strong financial position to continue the war easily, both were forced to compromise in the terms of the peace. Still, the Japanese public felt they had won the war, and they considered the lack of an indemnity to be an affront. There was a brief outbreak of protests and rioting in Tokyo when the terms of the agreement were made public. Similarly, the Russian people were also dissatisfied, angry about giving up half of Sakhalin.
The negotiations centered on access to ports and territories in Manchuria and Korea, control of Sakhalin Island, and the question of who was responsible for paying war costs. The chief aims of the Japanese negotiator included first control in Korea and South Manchuria, then the negotiation of an indemnity and control of Sakhalin 6. The Russians wanted to maintain Sakhalin Island, refused to pay a war costs indemnity to the Japanese, and hoped to maintain their fleet in the Pacific. The indemnity issue, along with the dispensation of Sakhalin Island, were the major sticking points in the negotiation, although given its financial straits in 1905, Russia was likely unable to pay an indemnity even if required by a treaty to do so.

Persia in the Great Game

Caught between imperialist Russia and British India. Persia played smartly in in their Great Game thus preserving her independence while faced with completely unfavorable odds gainst her. Russia forced Fath-Ali Shah to sign the Treaty of Golestan, acknowledging the Russian annexation of Georgia and surrendering a large chunk of the traditionally-Iranian south Caucasus, in 1813. The Czar using the modern warfare technology with heavy guns was able to compel the Shah to sign this humiliating treaty at the same time as the majority of his army was fending off the Napoleon Bonaparte's army. Russia eyeing the enormous wealth of British India attacked Iran again in the 1820's, and by 1828 had pounded the Iranians so badly that they signed the Treaty of Turkmanchai, in which Persia surrendered all claims north of the Aras River. This area now comprises Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan. Fath-Ali Shah's grandson, Muhammad Shah, succeeded him in 1834. At the behest of the Russians, he launched two unsuccessful attacks on Herat during the next 15 years.

The Central Asian region including Afghanistan was a zone of triangular contest between British Empires and Russian Czars. Czarist Russia and Britain in India were waging an undeclared war and containing each other in Central Asia and Afghanistan. These powers were struggling for establishing their hold in the region. As the Great Game intensified, the British and Russian demarcated the border between Afghanistan and Central Asia in 1884, when Russia annexed southern Tajikistan. Following its policy of annexation, in 1968, Russia annexed northern portion of present day Tajikistan and made it a part of Turkmenistan, a Russian controlled province.

In the old Great Game Afghanistan was the hub of conflict for British and Russian Empires. Element of uncertainty and distrust prevailed between both powers. The British had fear that Russia may threaten British Balochistan via Turkmen region to Herat and may animate the Kabul against British. On the other hand Russians were viewing that British would undermine them in Central Asia. Nasser al-Din Shah (r. 1848-1896)who modernized Iran's postal and banking systems (there's an irony here, considering the Persian roots of both), and established technical schools, played the European power against each other to preserve Iran's independence.

Soveriigns, No11, ( Nasser-Ed-Din-Shah), "He endowed Persia with a National Debt," by SPY (Leslie Ward), Vanity Fair, July 5, 1873.

May, Philip William, Nāṣer al-Dīn Shah, 1889
Although a younger son of Moḥammad Shāh, Nāṣer al-Dīn was named heir apparent through the influence of his mother. Serious disturbances broke out when he succeeded to the throne on his father’s death in 1848, but these were quelled through the efforts of his chief minister, Mīrzā Taqī Khān, Amir Kabir (Great Leader). Under Taqī Khān’s influence, Nāṣer al-Dīn began his rule by instituting a series of needed reforms. Taqī Khān, however, was later forced from power by his enemies, who included Nāṣer al-Dīn’s mother, and was disgraced, imprisoned, and finally murdered. In 1852 an attempt was made on Nāṣer al-Dīn’s life by two Bābīs (members of a religious sect considered heretical). Unable to regain territory lost to Russia in the early 19th century, Nāṣer al-Dīn sought compensation by seizing Herāt, Afg., in 1856. Great Britain regarded the move as a threat to British India and declared war on Iran, forcing the return of Herāt as well as Iranian recognition of the kingdom of Afghanistan.

Queen Victoria receiving the Shah of Persia at the Sovereign's Entrance, Windsor Castle, June 20. Published in an extra supplement to the Illustrated London News, 28 June 1873.

Nasir al-Din Shah traveled to Russia in 1878 and was impressed by their Cossacks. The next year Russian officers began training the new Persian Cossack Brigade. Amin al-Sultan his chief minister was a skilled politician and pursued a pro-British policy until 1892. In 1889 Nasir al-Din Shah went to Europe for the third time. He approved a lottery promoted by Malkum Khan; but he found opposition at home because gambling is forbidden by the Qur’an. The Shah cancelled the lottery, and Malkum Khan was able to sell his concession before the British were informed. Malkum was dismissed from his positions and lost his titles. He began criticizing the Iranian government in the reformist newspaper Qanun (Reform Law), which he founded in London and smuggled into Iran. The slogan “Unity, Justice, and Progress” was printed at the top, but he made personal attacks on Amin al-Sultan. Malkum quoted the merchant Qazvin who asked, “By what laws does the government sell our national rights to foreign racketeers?” The answer Malkum gave is that the Shah should call together a national assembly “to formulate laws that would initiate social progress.”

Zichy Mihaly Horse-Guardsmen Meeting Nasir-al-Din Shah
Sayyid Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, a Muslim reformer who helped to reconcile secularist reforms with the ‘ulama (learned Muslims), from an Azeri-speaking village in Afghanistan, traveled to India during the Mutiny of 1857-58, developing a hatred of British imperialism. He wrote “Refutation of the Materialists” and gained a reputation for supporting Islam, though he emphasized its social aspects. Jamal al-Din criticized the intolerance of religion that stifles science and serves political despotism, but he praised philosophy that frees one from beliefs. During the 1870s he educated young men in Egypt. Then in Paris he edited the Arabic newspaper al-‘Urwa al-Wuthqa, which promoted pan-Islamism. He went to London to try to influence British policy in Egypt, but he failed and returned to Persia. The Minister of the Press persuaded the Shah to invite Jamal al-Din to Tehran; but his anti-British ideas offended the Shah, who forced him to leave in 1887.

Introduction of Grand Princess Maria Alexandrovna to Shah Nasiral Dinin the Winter Palace

Qajar King Nasseredin Shah kisses Queen Victoria's Hand in Curtsy upon arrival at Buckingham Palace Reception in honor of the Persian Shah's State first Visit. Nasseredin Shah and Queen Victoria long reign strongly shaped their respective countries history. Victoria oversaw Britains Industrial Revolution ( not without it's share of Dickensian transformations) where as Nasseredin Shah opened Persia to Western economic and cultural Influence, and ideas that were to actually undermine his absolute reign in subsequent years following his assassination in 1848 with the 1906 Constitutional Revolution.

At six o'clock on the evening of 31 May 1873, Shah Nasir al-Din of Persia, fourth king of the Qajar dynasty, and his entourage arrived at Potsdam Station in Berlin, where they were greeted by the German Emperor Wilhelm I, Crown Prince Friedrich, Chancellor Bismarck and Field Marshal Moltke. Welcomed by the cheering of thousands, the shah entered Berlin along Unter den Linden, sitting in an open carriage next to the kaiser. The Persian monarch returned to the German capital to be received by the Hohenzollern monarchs in the summers of 1878 and 1889. He was the first Persian head of state ever to have visited Europe. Some years later his son and successor, Muzaffar al-Din, was also received in Berlin. He entered the capital in June 1902 and passed through Germany in 1900 and 1905, although he was not formally received on these two occasions. The shahs' sojourns in Germany were part of their six European tours, which also brought them to various other European courts. Nasir al-Din dined with the tsars at the Winter Palace of St Petersburg, enjoyed receptions given by King Leopold II in Brussels and banquets with the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph at Schönbrunn Palace, and attended the World's Fairs in Vienna (1873) and Paris (1878 and 1889).

Nassar Al-Din, Shah, was given admittance to the Order of the Garter by Queen Victoria, he committed Iran to help England against Russian design for India, By Tenniel, 'Punch', July 5, 1873.

Doctors advised the Shah to travel, and the British government loaned the Shah £300,000 so that he could visit London for medical treatment. Amin al-Sultan arranged loans of £3,000,000 at five percent interest from Russia in 1900 and 1902 to repay previous loans. These proved to be financially disastrous. Persia’s annual revenue was about £1,500,000, but in three years they borrowed and spent almost that much. In 1888 Persia gave the Caspian fisheries to Russia. That year Henry Drummond Wolff arrived from London,and he managed to gain economic concessions

Baron George de Reuter. 'The Wicked Baron'. Educated Cambridge. Director: Imperial Bank of Persia. Vanity Fair

Nāṣer-al-Din Shah granted an unprecedented concession in 1872 to Baron Julius de Reuter, a British subject of German origin. The concession, which covered the entire territory of Persia, gave Reuter the exclusive rights and monopoly, for seventy years, to exploit all mineral resources including, but not limited to, coal, iron, copper, lead, and petroleum, and to construct and operate roads, railways, telegraph lines, water canals, irrigation systems, and customs services. Reuter’s concession was cancelled a few years later because of strong political pressure and opposition from the Czarist government, as well as a number of eminent Persians. Reuter never accepted the cancellation of his concession and repeatedly filed claims for compensation. Eventually, as a result of the intervention by the British minister in Tehran, Nāṣer-al-Din Shah granted a new concession to Reuter in 1889, which became known as the Bānk-e Šāhi (Imperial Bank of Persia) concession. Under this new concession the bank had the right to exploit all mineral resources throughout the country, except gold, silver, and other precious metals.

'Feline Rapprochement', By Tenniel, 'Punch', June 23, 1873 The British lion, the Persion cat and the Russian bear representing "The Great Game"
The Shah opened the Karun River to international navigation. The Russians complained they were supposed to approve any transport concessions, but the Iranian government claimed it was not a concession. Wolff won a settlement of Baron Julius de Reuter’s claims that allowed Reuter’s bank the exclusive right to issue banknotes, and extensive mineral rights were included. This was called the Imperial Bank of Persia and had its headquarters in Tehran with several branches in various cities. The Russian Bank competed by making loans to prominent people, and they received road concessions.

Illustration shows a man labeled "Persia" and a man labeled "Greece" drinking a toast from a punch bowl labeled "Renewal of Diplomatic Relations". Caption: A long time between drinks. 491 BC-1902 AD

A 1910 issue of the German magazine Simplicissimus cover page titled 'The Persian Lion', showing a tamed, humiliated and impotent Persia being controlled by Britain and Russia.

In March 1890 the Shah gave the British subject Major Talbot a fifty-year monopoly over Iran’s tobacco production and sales in exchange for a gift of £25,000, annual rent of £15,000, and 25% of the profits for Iran, but later in the year the newspaper Akhtar exposed the secret and criticized the concession. Jamal al-Din’s disciples added their leaflets on this issue that affected many Iranians who were involved in the tobacco business. The incident—popularly termed the “Tobacco Rebellion”—is often considered to be the origin of modern Iranian nationalism. When the tobacco company’s agents began to arrive in April 1891, a major protest was led by a religious leader from Shiraz. He was banished to Iraq and conferred with Jamal al-Din, who wrote to the top Shi’i ‘ulama, Hajji Mirza HasanShirazi. He put an interdict on smoking that was widely obeyed. A revolt in Tabriz forced the Government to suspend the tobacco operation, and the general strike spread to Mashhad, Isfahan, Tehran, Qazvin, Yazd, and Kirmanshah. The consumer’s boycott was supported by the Russians as well as Persians. By the end of 1891 a successful nationwide boycott on the sale and use of tobacco was in place. In Tehran troops fired on unarmed demonstrators,killing several, and the Government cancelled the concession in early 1892. The Iranian government contracted its first large foreign debt of £500,000 to the British-owned Imperial Bank, which authorized exorbitant pay to the company. As a result of this British fiasco the Russians became more influential.

Alexander II and Nasir al-Din Shah on a Parade in the Tsaritsyn Meadow.

Finances were re-organized; tariffs on native merchants were increased; and reduced court expenditures affected the ‘ulama. Belgian administrators were invited to reform the customs, but Iranian merchants complained that Russians were favored. The Shah sold an oil monopoly to the Australian British subject William Knox-D’Arcy, and new road tolls were granted to the Imperial Bank of Britain. A French company loaned Persia £200,000 to buy arms. The Belgian Joseph Naus mediated a new customs tariff that was signed by Persia and Russia in the Treaty of Erzerum in November 1901, ratified in December 1902, and kept secret until February 1903. People protested against the Belgian administrators and the foreign concessions. In the summer of 1903. Secret societies grew and spread critical literature.

Reception of Nasr-ed-Din King of Persia during His Visit to St. Petersburg on 11-14 May 1

The Azerbaijani Fath ‘Ali Akhundov wrote Kamal al-Daula va Jalal al-Daula, a collection of letters criticizing conditions in Iran. In Tabriz intellectuals were led by bookstore owner Muhammad ‘Ali Khan and Sayyid Hasan Taqizada. The Society of Learning was organized in Tehran, and they founded the first national library. Five of the most important organizations were the Secret Center in Tabriz with its journal led by the merchant ‘Ali Karbala-yi, the Social Democratic Party of Iran formed in 1904 in Baku by émigrés led by Azerbaijani school-teacher Narim Narimanov, the Society of Humanity in Tehran founded by ‘Abbas Kuli Khan Qazvini, the Revolutionary Committee headed by Malik al-Mutakallimin, and the Secret Society founded by Nazem al-Islam Kirmani who wrote History of the Awakening of Iranians. In February 1905 the Secret Society listed several demands for reforms including better laws and courts of justice.

Nasir al-Din Shah was assassinated in 1852. His oldest was excluded from the succession because his mother was of low birth, and the sickly Muzaffar al-Din became shah. He made no more foreign loans, and kept order, but he was not interested in political reform. He promoted music, art, and poetry, and he encouraged the translation of Western literature. The police force in Tehran was modernized, and city services were improved. The postal service expanded and began using stamps. The three progressive writers in Trabzon were extradited and executed at Tabriz. Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, the only person implicated by Rida Kirmani, became very ill with cancer and died in 1897.

LE RIRE 1900 N°300 Charles Leandre, Roubille, Willette, Mouzaffer-Ed-Dine Shah of Persia

In December 1905 the Governor of Tehran bastinadoed some sugar merchants for refusing to lower their raised sugar prices. They took sanctuary in the Royal Mosque of Tehran and were joined by mullahs and tradesmen. Imam Jum‘a helped the agents of ‘Ain al-Daula to disperse them. At Sayyid Muhammad Tabataba’i’s suggestion they moved to the Shahzada ‘Abd al-‘Azim shrine, where they were joined by 2,000 students, lower mullahs, merchants, and common people. They held out for 25 days, demanding a House of Justice (adalatkhana). The Shah dismissed the Governor and agreed to the demand in January 1906. When the government ordered Shaikh Muhammad Va‘iz expelled too, people protested, and on July 11 an officer killed a young sayyid. At his public funeral outside the mosque the Cossacks attacked the crowd, killing 22 and wounding more than a hundred. Many mullahs and others left Tehran and went to Qum, and the crowd protesting inside the British legation grew to 14,000 people organized by guilds. They turned the legation into an open-air school and heard lectures. They demanded that ‘Ain al-Daula be dismissed, and they asked for a representative assembly (majlis) also.

Auguste Roubille, Shah de Perse, ca. 1900, French Political Caricatures Collection. Mozaffer Ed-Dine Shah Qajar (1853-1907) was the fifth Qajarid Shah of Persia, ruling from 1896 to 1907.
On August 5, 1906, Muzaffar al-Din Shah, faced with a general strike in Tehran, agreed to the Assembly (Majlis), which was elected by male voters from the six classes of Mujahids, Qajars, nobles, landowners, merchants, and guilds. Only males literate in Persian between the ages of 30 and 70 who were not in the Government and had not been convicted of a crime were eligible to serve in the Assembly. The first Assembly began meeting in October 1906, and a committee wrote the Fundamental Law that the Shah signed on December 30, five days before he died. He was succeeded by his son Muhammad ‘Ali. He recalled Amin al-Sultan (Atabak) from his travels, and he tried to find a compromise between the Shah and the conservatives in the Assembly. A radical assassinated Atabak on August 31, 1907, the same day that the British and Russians settled their issues in Iran as well as in Tibet and Afghanistan. The treaty was signed before the Iranians were even informed, causing riots in Shiraz, Isfahan, and Tabriz.

The Anglo - Russian Entente and the Division of Iran 1907, By Sambourne, 'Punch', October 2, 1907

Great Britain's interest in Persia began early in the nineteenth century. This interest led to friction with Russia, Persia's northern neighbour. The Anglo-Russian Agreement of 1907 helped to stabilize nearly a century of intermittent conflict between them. This agreement provided for a Russian sphere of influence in northern Persia while a neutral zone separated it from Britain's sphere of influence in south-eastern Persia. For Russia, Persia represented an area for future territorial annexation. Great Britain, on the other hand, sought no territory in Persia. Rather, its primary concern was not its commercial interests, or oil fields (which were discovered two years later), but the military security of India, its jewel in the East.

August 12, 1908. The Ottoman Emperor makes another specious effort to amend his constitution..

Shah of Persia. "Go on in, Abdul—just for the look of the thing. You can always come out if you don't like it."

Sick Man of Europe. "Yes, I know. But one gets so wet!"

Mozaffar o-Din's son Mohammad Ali Shah (reigned 1907-09), with the aid of Russia, attempted to rescind the constitution and abolish parliamentary government. After several disputes with the members of the Majlis, in June 1908 he used his Russian-officered Persian Cossacks Brigade to bomb the Majlis building, arrest many of the deputies, and close down the assembly. Resistance to the shah, however, coalesced in Tabriz, Esfahan, Rasht, and elsewhere. In July 1909, constitutional forces marched from Rasht and Esfahan to Tehran, deposed the shah, and re-established the constitution.The ex-shah went into exile in Russia.

Benjamin Disraeli, British Prime Minister. (Later Earl of Beconsfield). 'He educated the Tories…', By Singe, Vanity Fair, 1869.
Benjamin Disraeli first met Bismarck at the Russian ambassador’s residence in London in the summer of 1862, as leader of the Tory opposition. On this occasion, Bismarck, on the verge of assuming power, spelled out his plans for Prussian greatness under his leadership:
I shall soon be compelled to undertake the conduct of the Prussian government. My first care will be to reorganize the army, with or without the help of the Landtag [the legislature] . . . As soon as the army shall have been brought into such a condition to inspire respect, I shall seize the first best pretext to declare war against Austria, dissolve the German Diet, subdue the minor states, and give national unity to Germany under Prussian leadership. I have come here to say this to the Queen’s ministers.
For clarity of intent, this is hard to beat. Afterwards Disraeli warned the Austrian envoy: “Take care of that man. He means what he says.”

Punch, New crowns for old ones!, 1876
Benjamin Disraeli offers Queen Victoria the crown of Empress of India in exchange for the British crown, and in the process reduces the power of the British monarch.

The Royal Parrot, The Odd Fellow, 1841
In October, 1839, Queen Victoria's cousins Ernest and Albert paid her a visit, bringing with them a letter from their uncle Leopold, in which he recommended them to her care. They were at once upon intimate terms, and the Queen confided to her uncle that "Albert was very fascinating." Four days after their arrival she informed Lord Melbourne that she had made up her mind as to the question of marriage. The Queen described her betrothal as follows:
"At half-past twelve I sent for Albert. He came to the closet, where I was alone, and after a few minutes I said to him that I thought he would be aware why I wished him to come, and that it would make me happy if he would consent to what I wished, namely, to marry me. There was no hesitation on his part, but the offer was received with the greatest demonstrations of kindness and affection. . . . I told him I was quite unworthy of him. . . . He said he would be very happy to spend his life with me."

Leopold II, King of Belgium, holding bags of money! 'With France and Prussia pressing on each side', By Coide, Vanity Fair, 1869.

The most notable event in Leopold's career was the foundation of the Congo Free State. While still Duke of Brabant he had been the first to call the attention of the Belgians to the need of enlarging their horizon beyond sea, and after his accession to the throne he gave the first impulse towards the development of this idea by founding in 1876 the Association Internationale Africaine. He enlisted the services of Henry Morton Stanley, who visited Brussels in 1878 after exploring the Congo river, and returned in 1879 to the Congo as agent of the Comité d'Études du Haut Congo, soon afterwards reorganized as the "International Association of the Congo." This association was, in 1884-85, recognized by the powers as a sovereign state under the name of the État Indépendant du Congo.

Leopold's exploitation of this vast territory, which he administered autocratically, and in which he associated himself personally with various financial schemes, was understood to bring him an enormous fortune; it was the subject of acutely hostile criticism, to a large extent substantiated by the report of a commission of inquiry instituted by the king himself in 1904, and followed in 1908 by the annexation of the state to Belgium.

Thomas Nast, Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War

Some of the most recognizable cartoons were published in Harper's Weekly, a New York City periodical that also featured sketches of war scenes and famous personalities - as well as news and serialized literature. Among its illustrators were Winslow Homer (who also worked for the Illustrated Times) and Alfred Waud. The leading illustrator of Harpers Weekly was Thomas Nast. Nast was the most influential American caricaturist in the mid- to late 19th century. Specializing in political cartoons. He was a staunch opponent of slavery and throughout the Civil War produced patriotic drawings urging people to help crush the rebels. Abraham Lincoln is reported to have said: "Thomas Nast has been our best recruiting sergeant. His emblematic cartoons have never failed to arouse enthusiasm and patriotism." Nast was also the artist who created the traditional image of Santa Claus and the Republican party's elephant symbol.

The pedlar and his pack, or the desperate effort, an over balance, James Akin, 1812. The editor of Philadelphia Democratic Press, John Binns, who had published handbills accusing candidate Andrew Jackson of arbitrary executions and other violent acts supports a load of coffins on his back, along with the figures of Henry Clay and incumbent President Adams.

Black Recruit and Abraham Lincoln, London Punch, 1862

We Accept the Situation, Thomas Nast for Harpers Weekly, 1867, An emancipated black voting for the first time versus a resentful, disenfranchised former Confederates.

The Spanish American War, President McKinley offering Uncle Sam different "dishes"
The loss of the last Spanish colonies in America and Asia was a consequence of the Spanish American War, a conflict which meant the end of an empire (Spain) and the rise of another one (the USA). This war had an important reflection on newspapers. Experts consider the Spanish-American War to be the first "media war". This conflict was widely covered by the USA newspapers. The press barons Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst, had an important role in the development of the conflict. The way they presented the news contributed to inflame the public opinion in the USA and created the propitious conditions for war. Their newspapers, The New York World and The New York Journal, competed in sensationalism and are considered to be some of the first examples of yellow journa

The Cuban Melodrama.' American cartoon by C. Jay Taylor, 1896, casting Uncle Sam as the hero, Spain as the villain, and Cuba as the damsel in distress.

The Spanish-American War is often referred to as the first "media war." During the 1890s, journalism that sensationalized—and sometimes even manufactured—dramatic events was a powerful force that helped propel the United States into war with Spain. Led by newspaper owners William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer, journalism of the 1890s used melodrama, romance, and hyperbole to sell millions of newspapers--a style that became known as yellow journalism.

President Theodore Roosevelt’ foreign policy: “Speak softly, and carry a big stick,” 1904
The United States victory in the Spanish-American War ushered in an era of unabashed American imperialism. During this time, the United States often used its “gunboat diplomacy ” to intimidate and to control weaker nations, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean. Americans agreed that the newly prestigious U.S. Navy should have fueling stations around the world. Carried on a wave of national exultation, and congress approved the annexation of Hawaii on August 12, 1898.

On April 13, 1906 a cartoon in the New York World featured Mark Twain dethroning Czar Nicholas II with his pen.

Theodore Roosevelt's "trust-busting" campaigns
The Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 was the first measure passed by the U.S. Congress to prohibit abusive monopolies. At that time, Standard Oil and its affiliates controlled more than 90 percent of the oil refining capacity and most of the oil marketing facilities in the U.S. The Sherman Act authorized the federal government to institute proceedings against trusts in order to dissolve them, but Supreme Court rulings prevented federal authorities from using the act for some years. Theodore Roosevelt committed himself in 1901 and during both of his mandates to a strong war against monopolies, launching the federal government in 1906 in a lawsuit against the Standard. As a result of President Theodore Roosevelt's "trust-busting" campaigns, the Sherman Act began to be invoked with some success.

President Theodore Roosevelt was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 for his work in the negotiations that led to the Treaty of Portsmouth ending the Russo-Japanese War in 1905.

The negotiations to end the Russo-Japanese war began at Sagamore Hill when Roosevelt invited diplomats on both sides, Russia and Japan, to his home in Oyster Bay. After meeting with all of them, he sent the diplomats out on board of the presidential yacht Mayflower. Negotiations continued at and near a naval base in Portsmouth, because it was federal property and cool in the summer. Delegates also went back and forth to Oyster Bay to confer with the president. The peace treaty was signed at the US Navy base in Portsmouth. Thus the accord is called the "Treaty of Portsmouth".

Theodore Roosevelt and Anti-Third Term Principle, This cartoon satirize Roosevelt's reversal of his anti-third term promise and his assumption of leadership of the Progressive Party. Both La Follette and Roosevelt lost the Republican nomination to the incumbent, Taft, who still controlled the national convention delegates. Roosevelt, however, had swept 9 of the 12 states with primaries, including Taft's home state of Ohio. 1912

For a year after the party's defeat in the congressional elections, Theodore Roosevelt remained silent. Then, near the end of 1911, America's political parties began to prepare for the presidential election that would be held the following year. Roosevelt was sure Taft could not be re-elected. 

Taft had become very conservative. He had close ties to business interests. So, Theodore Roosevelt began to speak out again in opposition to many of the things President Taft was doing.  Roosevelt wanted to be the presidential candidate of the Republican Party in the election of 1912. Earlier, this would have pleased Taft. He would have been happy to leave the White House.  Taft believed he could win the Republican nomination for president. He still had the support of many party leaders. 

Taft made a strong statement against the progressives. "They are seeking," he said, "to pull down the temple of freedom and representative government." A reporter asked Roosevelt to answer Taft's statement. Roosevelt said: "my hat is in the ring." That meant he was a candidate.

JP Morgan

Commercial Might Versus Divine Right, The Modern Trust King (J.P. Morgan) Brings Dismay to the Old Kings of Europe (King Edward VII of Britain & Kaiser William of Germany) 
Theodore Roosevelt as a heavy-bottomed doll that keeps bouncing back, no matter how he is knocked down by the major financial powers.P Morgan, Rockefeller and Skull & Bones E. H Harriman

Keppler, Udo J., artist. "Following the Piper. His Music Enchants the World." Color lithograph. Puck, September 17, 1902. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress.

JP Morgan hired Thomas Edison, a telegraph boy turned inventor, to install electricity in his 5th avenue Manhattan mansion. Morgan’s home became a lab for Edison’s experiments and a small generator was installed to power the home’s 400 light bulbs. Though his father Junius believed it a fad, electric light became a must have modern utility for the city’s elite. Against his father’s advice, Morgan invested everything in Edison to form the Edison Electricity Company. They created the world’s first power station and soon half of Manhattan’s connected.
J.P Morgan used his great wealth, power, and drive to control the finances and politics of the United States. In 1877, when Congress failed to adopt a military budget, Morgan stepped in, and gave $2.5 million to the military payroll, all of which was eventually paid back by the government, angering some Congressmen who grumbled that they had never approved the loan. In 1894, when the country was in danger of defaulting on its loans, Morgan demanded a meeting with President Grover Cleveland who eventually accepted his self-serving solution to the crisis. And then finally in 1907, when Theodore Roosevelt–who was no fan of big business or J. P. Morgan–was confronted with the collapse of several banking trusts, he saw no alternative but to involve the financial magnate. Morgan forced the presidents of the larger and more successful trusts to bail out the smaller, weaker ones–saving the country from financial disaster
The US President Taft Handing the Problematical Mexican Situation to His Successor Woodrow Wilson,
Louis Glackens. 1913

The Treaty of Versailles was signed at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. The main signatories of the treaty were the Big Four: the British Prime Minister, Lloyd George, the US President Woodrow Wilson, the French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau and the Italian Prime Minister Vittorio Orlando. "Peace and future cannon fodder", a small child with a copy of the Treaty behind him and his head the sign "1940 class". The Big Four are seen walking past, and there is a caption: "The Tiger: Curious! I seem to hear a child weeping!".The final treaty was not popular. Many in Britain and France were angry that Germany hadn't been treated more harshly and that the German Kaiser hadn't been put on trial. Most Germans were humiliated and horrified by the treaty - disgusted at being made to take the blame for the entire war (the War Guilt clause - 231) and having to pay for it.

Germany's view of the Versailles Peace Proposals, is captured in this cartoon in Simpliccimus issue of June 3, 1919. The American president Wilson, the French president Clemenceau and the British Prime Minister Lloyd George have condemned the country to death.

The Gaol bird is the broken-wing "peace" who is chained to the Treaty of Versailles. Clemenceau, Lloyd George and Wilson announce that she is free! The American politics were deeply divided with President Wilson at the helms of the Democratic Party and the Republican Party dominating the US Congress. Republicans used the Treaty as an opportunity to criticize Wilson for not consulting them about the Treaty. Americans were also queasy about president's vision for a League of Nations. Some Americans felt that the Treaty was lopsided against Germany and Britain and France were imposing harsh financial penalties on Germany to enrich themselves. In the end, the Congress rejected the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations.

The Great War

Dutch artist Louis Raemaekers (1869–1956) has been called the Great Cartoonist of the Great War. According to president Theodore Roosevelt; The cartoons of Louis Raemaekers constitute the most powerful of the honorable contributions made by neutrals to the cause of civilization in the World War. Born in Roermond, in the Netherlands, Raemaekers, unconvinced by reports of German atrocities in invaded Belgium, crossed the border and returned home outraged. In the early years of WWI, Raemaekers, critical of the United States’ neutrality, in a number of drawings clearly asked for U.S. intervention. His scathing anti-German political cartoons gained rapid fame at home and abroad. By October 1917 more than two thousand newspapers on both sides of the Atlantic were printing his drawings on a regular basis . Raemaekers’s often provocative work resulted in his government’s threatening to place him on trial for jeopardizing Dutch neutrality. After the armistice, Raemaekers used his art to champion the League of Nations and, later, to sound the alarm against German and Italian fascism.

Will they last, Louis Raemaekers, c. 1915, Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm II, the subject of Raemaekers’s many barbed caricatures, put a bounty on his head.

China imperialism cartoon-while Emperor Guangxu helplessly looks on, China as a pie is about to be carved up by Victoria (British Empire), Wilhelm II (German Empire), Nicolas II (Russian Empire), Marianne (France), and Meiji (Japanese Empire)

Political cartoon by Frederick Opper from Puck magazine showing Queen Victoria and her family panhandling from John Bull on the steps of Buckingham Palace.

SOLID, Entente Cordiale GERMANY: "Donnerwetter! It's rock. I thought it was going to be paper." (Aug. 2, 1911)

On March 31, 1905, Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany arrived in Tangiers to declare his support for the sultan of Morocco, provoking the anger of France and Britain in what will become known as the First Moroccan Crisis, a foreshadowing of the greater conflict between Europe's great nations still to come, the First World War.
A Second Moroccan Crisis flared in April 1911, when the French pushed troops into the country, claiming to be defending the sultan against riots that had erupted in Fez but actually violating the terms of the Algeciras convention. In response, Germany sent its own warship, the Panther, which arrived in the port of Agadir on May 21, intensifying the enmity between the two nations and, by extension, their allies. Slightly more than two years before the outbreak of World War I, then, the two Moroccan crises left no doubt that the traditional power balance in Europe had shifted into large blocs of power, with Germany relatively isolated on one side—enjoying only lukewarm support from Austria-Hungary and Italy—and Britain, France, and Russia on the other.

The Entente Cordiale, an agreement between Britain and France, resolved a number of longstanding colonial disputes, and established a diplomatic understanding between the two countries, which however stopped short of binding either to any military undertaking in support of the other. France, keen to build a buffer against possible German aggression, signed the agreement in a bid to encourage an Anglo alliance with France. Similarly Britain was willing to encourage co-operation between the two countries with an eye on Germany's decision to expand her naval strength in competition with Britain.
Germany, concerned over the signing of the entente agreement, determined to test its practical strength by provoking a crisis in Morocco in 1905, leading to the Algeciras Conference (1906). The entente was extended in 1907 to include Russia, culminating in the alliance that formally took on the Central Powers during World War One.


THE KAISER: "So, you see--you've lost everything."

On 2 August 1914, the day before Germany declared war on France, the German government wrote to the Belgian government demanding the right of free passage across Belgium for its troops, so that the latter could most efficiently invade France and reach Paris. Belgium's reply to what amounted to a German ultimatum (grant free passage or suffer occupation as an enemy of Germany) was delivered on 3 August 1914.

Germany's invasion of Belgium on 4 August 1914 quickly prompted allegations of 'war crimes'. Some of them were confined to excesses committed in the military conflict. But the accusations of atrocities committed against civilians in occupied Belgium were far more damaging to the German cause. During the autumn of 1914, the British Foreign Office received a number of disturbing 'eyewitness' accounts from fleeing British subjects and Belgian refugees.

TRIPPER WILHELM: "First Class to Paris."
CLERK: "Line blocked."
WILHELM: "Then make it Warsaw."
CLERK: "Line blocked."
WILHELM: "Well, what about Calais?"
CLERK: "Line blocked."
WILHELM: "Hang it! I must go somewhere! I promised my people I would."

THE EMPEROR: "What! No babes, Sirrah?"
THE MURDERER: "Alas, Sire, none."
THE EMPEROR: "Well, then, no babes, no iron crosses."
(Exit murderer, discouraged.)
Throughout 1914 the Zeppelin air ships were used for reconnaissance patrols over the North Sea, but the German Admiralty was pressing for permission to use them for attacks against England. The Kaiser, somewhat reluctantly, granted such permission and on the 19th of January the Germans carried out the first Zeppelin raid against Britain, killing two and injuring sixteen. This was the first of many raids, which continued at a rate of about two per month, in parallel with the continuing reconnaissance patrols. The German Admiralty was very enthusiastic about the results, and asked for permission to bomb London. This was only granted by the Kaiser after a series of raids by French bombers on German cities. On the 31st of May 1915 the first raid was carried out against London, killing seven and injuring thirty five.
"This submarine business is going to get me into trouble with America; but what can an All-Powerful do with a thing like this on his back?"

At 1:40 p.m. on May 7, 1915, the German U-boat, U-20 launched a torpedo at the British ocean liner RMS Lusitania, famous for its luxurious accommodations and speed capability. The sinking of Lusitania enraged Americans and hastened the United States' entrance into World War I.

("When I went to Bulgaria I resolved that if there were to be any assassinations I would be on the side of the assassins." STATEMENT BY FERDINAND.)
The Kaiser, Ferdinand and Hamid II stand over the corpse of Armenia. On 19 May 1915, Britain, Frence, and Russia condemned Turkey's massacre of Armenians. Bulgarian Tsar Ferdinand decided on 23 September 1915 to join the Central Powers, and on 14 October 1915 declared war on Serbia. In retaliation Britain and France declared war on Bulgaria on 16 October. Russia followed suit a few days later.

THE KAISER (to Austrian Emperor): "Franz! Franz! I'm surprised and pained. "
In the summer of 1915 Austria approached Serbia with proposals for a separate peace, Kaiser was dismayed.


}(breathlessly): "Well?"

THE BIRD: "Wouldn't even look at me!"

GRETCHEN: "I wonder if this gentleman really is my good angel after all!"
Gretchen's character in Faust represents the ability of humanity to become corrupted because of a turn towards the subjective self. Gretchen originally represents goodness and morality; even Mephistopheles finds no fault in her. However, Faust's influence on her inward life causes her to lose this morality by focusing on a selfish love affair that costs her life and faith.
THE LAST THROW, February, 1917.

ALSO RAN, March, 1917.

WILHELM: "Are you luring them on, like me?"
MEHMED: "I'm afraid I am!"

LITTLE WILLIE (of Prussia): "As one Crown Prince to another, isn't your Hindenburg line getting a bit shaky?"
RUSSIA'S DARK HOUR, August, 1917.

Since early 1917, Russia, one of the Entente's principal powers, had been in a state of turmoil. In February of that year, the Czarist government's poor management of the war had helped to inspire a popular uprising, the February Revolution. This revolution forced the abdication of Czar Nicholas II and placed in power a Provisional Government of liberal and socialist factions, ultimately under the leadership of Socialist Revolutionary party member Alexander Kerensky. This brief experiment with pluralist democracy was a chaotic one, and in the summer months, the continual deterioration of the war effort and an increasingly dire economic situation caused Russian workers, soldiers, and sailors to riot ("The July Days").
On October 24-25, 1917, Bolshevik (left-wing socialist) forces under Vladimir Lenin seized key government buildings and stormed the Winter Palace, then the seat of the new government in Russia's capital, Petrograd (now St. Petersburg). The "Great October Socialist Revolution," the first successful Marxist coup in history, dislodged the ineffectual Provisional Government, and ultimately established a Soviet Socialist Republic under Lenin's leadership. The new Soviet state's radical social, political, economic, and agrarian reforms would in the postwar years unnerve Western democratic governments, who so feared the spread of Communism throughout Europe that they were willing to compromise or appease right-wing regimes (including Adolf Hitler's Nazi Germany) in the 1920s and 1930s.
But the immediate effect of the Russian Revolution on the European stage was a brutal and enduring Civil War in Russian lands (1917-1922) and the decision of the new Bolshevik leadership to make a separate peace with the Kaiser's Germany. When negotiations foundered over German demands, the German army launched an all-out offensive on the Eastern Front, resulting in a peace treaty at Brest-Litovsk on March 6, 1918.
RUPPRECHT (of Bavaria): "Well, as one Crown Prince to another, what about your Hohenzollern line?"

After the German declaration of War on France on August 3, the Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia joined his regiment, which saw action at the Battle of Longwy. For his service the Crown Prince was awarded the Iron Cross. Soon the winds of war changed, German troops had been close to Paris, but came to a halt at the Marne. The bitter fighting and the heavy losses of men and material made the Crown Prince write a memorandum in which he stated that he favored an end to the senseless hostilities. Russia was very much on his mind. In 1917 the Crown Prince tried to persuade Chancellor Hollweg to sue for a reasonable peace. This time a firm refusal came from the High Command of the Army (Hindenburg and Ludendorff) In another letter dated July 18, 1917 he tried again to influence Reich politics. He brought forward several suggestions for the possible achievement of Peace. Again, he was rebuffed.

He was not involved in the reform efforts in the fall of 1918; he was at the time with his regiment. The peace negotiations were of the utmost importance for the future of the House of Hohenzollern, as the opposing nations demanded the abdication of the Kaiser. However, the Kaiser refused to give up. At the beginning of November 1918, in view of the hopeless situation on the fronts and the intolerable situation at home, a group of sailors of the Imperial Navy refused to take their ships out for a last senseless slaughter, and soon this revolution spread all through Germany, reaching Berlin on November 9. The Kaiser was at his headquarters and still refused to budge. Chancellor Max von Baden took it upon himself to announce that the Kaiser of Germany and King of Prussia, Wilhelm II, had decided to denounce the throne. His hand forced in this way, the Kaiser was persuaded to seek asylum in neutral Holland. He avoided capture but made it impossible to retain the monarchy in Germany. Both the Kaiser and the Crown Prince signed the document of abdication. With this, the 500-year-old dynasty had come to an end
A WORD OF ILL OMEN, June, 1917.

CROWN PRINCE (to Kaiser, drafting his next speech): "For Gott's sake, father, be careful this time, and don't call the American Army 'contemptible.'"

On 3 February 1917, President Wilson addressed Congress to announce that diplomatic relations with Germany were severed. In a Special Session of Congress held on 2 April 1917, President Wilson delivered his 'War Message.' Four days later, Congress overwhelmingly passed the War Resolution which brought the United States into the Great War.

THE INSEPARABLE, September, 1917.
THE KAISER (to his people): "Do not listen to those who would sow dissension between us. I will never desert you."
BETRAYED, December, 1917.
THE PANDER: "Come on; come and be kissed by him."

CIVILISATION: "What's that supposed to represent?"
IMPERIAL ARTIST: "Why, 'Peace,' of course."
CIVILISATION: "Well, I don't recognise it--and I never shal

THE DEATH LORD, April, 1918.
THE KAISER (on reading the appalling tale of German losses): "What matter, so we Hohenzollerns survive?"

THE SANDS RUN OUT, October, 1918.
On November 9, 1918, in the midst of widespread unrest and deserted by the commanders of the German Army, Emperor (Kaiser) William II abdicated the German throne. On the same day, SPD delegate Philipp Scheidemann proclaimed Germany a republic, with an interim government led by Friedrich Ebert. Two days later, German representatives, led by Catholic Center Party (Zentrum) representative Matthias Erzberger, met with a delegation of the victorious Entente powers under French Field Marshall Ferdinand Foch, the commanding general of the Entente forces, in a railcar in Compiègne Forest and accepted armistice terms.

Ilych Lenin ridding the world of monarchs, capitalists and clerics, Viktor Deni, 1919

The Gap in the Bridge, by Leonard Ravenhill, in the British magazine Punch 1919
This cartoon is critical of America. Although President Wilson had been the originator the the idea of a League, now America is refusing to join -- in spite of the USA being the 'keystone'.

Woman’s Vote, William H. Walker, 1920. In the first presidential election in which they could vote, women were wooed by both major parties.

A bread line or a run on a bank? Chester Garde, 1931.
Hoover, facing harsh criticism from the American public for his policy inaction, reluctantly established the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC), in 1932, which provided loans to failing banks, and through the additional power of the Emergency Relief Act, the RFC was authorized to provide loans to state governments for unemployment relief. But, these efforts were too late to stop the economic downslide of the country. He was overwhelmingly defeated by Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1932 presidential election. For the rest of the depression, though, Hoover attacked every substantive measure for relief and what he saw as radical influences in Washington.

“A Scene from the ‘Good Old Days.’” from Brennessel, the Nazi humor magazine, January 1934. Marx is portrayed as a theoretician that leads German workers into a ruinous path.

Hoover Prosperity, Tulley, ca. 1932. A sarcastic interpretation of Herbert Hoover’s contention that prosperity was just around the corner.

Mephisto to Faust: You Can Trust me, Louis Raemaekers, 1939, A sarcastic interpretation of the Non- Aggression Pact of 1939 signed in August with a secret agenda between Stalin and Hitler.

Constitution of the United States Canceled, Greaves , 1940. F.D.R.’s pursuit of a third term suggested that he acts like a king who considered himself above the law.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt tells the old men on the Supreme Court to get in step with his New Deal legislative efforts.  1937, by O. Seibel.
The New Deal faced drastic opposition from the Supreme Court, which took its consrvative stance from a legal viewpoint and in 1935 it effectively declared the National Recovery Administration (NRA) illegal. In the following year it declared the Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) unconstitutional thus killing off the AAA. The point made by the Supreme Court was that any efforts made to help farmers etc. should come at a state level and not federal level and that these parts of the New Deal went against the powers given to the states by the Constitution. 11 out of 16 of the Alphabet Laws were decreed unconstitutional in cases heard by the Supreme Court. The argument of the Supreme Court was that Roosevelt had tried to impose the power of the federal government on state governments – and this was unconstitutional.

“The Calendar of a Condemned Man.” a German propaganda cartoon in Lustige Blätter, 1941. Churchill crosses out the names of English cities as the gallows waits behind him.

Nazi propaganda cartoon, Brennessel, 1938. Mars is speaking to the "warmongers" Eden and Churchill, who had been objecting to Chamberlain's appeasement policies. This was Brennessel's last cover cartoon featuring Churchill before closing down in that year.

“American Candelabra,” an anti-Semitic propaganda cartoon in Lustige Blätter, 1942. Roosevelt is portrayed as the upholder of the Jewish Interests

The Russo-German Pact, A Japanese perspective.

The Nightmare. “A frightening thought. Our voters are demanding that we fulfill our campaign promises...”

Punch cartoon, 1933. Adolf Hitler is carried to power on the shoulders of President Paul von Hindenburg (Left) and Chancellor Franz von Papen (Right). By dismissing Prussia's social-democratic state government in July 1932, Papen struck a fatal blow against the beleaguered Weimar Republic.

Hitler's Dream

In 1940, Marshal Philippe Pétain was a national hero in France for his victory at the Battle of Verdun during World War I. Following the German invasion of France in May 1940, the well-respected eight-four-year old was asked to form a government. Seeing the French army defeated, the “Hero of Verdun” asked for an armistice. With the German army occupying two-thirds of the country, Pétain believed he could repair the ruin caused by the invasion and obtain the release of the numerous prisoners of war by cooperating with the Germans. He, however, opposed Franco-German collaboration advocated by his vice premier Pierre Laval, whom he dismissed in December 1940. When the Germans forced Pétain to take Laval back as premier, he himself withdrew into a purely nominal role. Yet he balked at resigning, convinced that, if he did, Hitler would place all of France directly under German rule.

After Allied landings in November 1942 in North Africa, Pétain secretly ordered his forces to aid the Allies. But, at the same time, he published official messages protesting the landing. His doubledealing was to be his undoing. When Pétain dispatched an emissary to arrange for a peaceful transfer of power, General de Gaulle refused it. Brought to trial in France for high treason, he was stripped for all rank and sentenced to death. The High Court requested that the sentence should not be carried out in view of Pétain’s great age, and later de Gaulle commuted the death sentence to life imprisonment.

The Dummy That Spoke by Itself. Adolf/Benito } (together). "Where did that one come from - you or me?" (the dummy, General Franco of Spain, says "Withdraw All Volunteers!" as neither Hitler or Mussolini knows which of them is really controlling the puppet)

Illingworth, 2 November 1939, Hitler is being advised by his advisers ‘Why not an offensive today?... Wait until the spring .. Russian gold is behind us... Germany is bankrupt... Why not bomb Britain?... there might be reprisals...’

Arthur Szyk, 1944

Europe is getting hot! We've got to move to the western hemisphere , 1944 Arthur Szyk, 1944.
 Szyk portrays the Axis plot to dominate the world. Hitler sits at the head of the table (left), flanked by Joseph Goebels and Hermann Goering on his left, Spanish dictator Francisco Franco to his right, and Heinrich Himmler across.

Leslie Gilbert Illingworth's Second World War

Finland and Russia, while the US offer small help

Germany and Italy's aggressive moves in  the Balkan countries. 

Fall of Paris, and Roosevelt's pledge

France's Armistice

Britain lonely fight with France being fallen and Roosevelt not ready yet to join

Hitler's Rumania dish

Hitler and Mussolini serenading General Franco  of Spain

The Yalta conference

Hitler's myth

A soviet propaganda cartoon depicting Uncle Sam exploiting South Americans, Israelis and others.

Editorial cartoons after WWII

Harry Truman playing Stalin a chess game the board is Germany, and the opening gambit occurs in Berlin. Leslie Illington, National Library of Wales.
Stalin’s pieces include “Eastern Bloc,” and “Berlin Blockade.” Truman's pieces include a knight, “Air Lift,” and a piece looking a lot like Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, “Atlantic Alliance.” Stalin's real concern was for the emergence of an economically viable West Germany that would fall under the shadow of American control and eliminate any potential opportunity for Soviet influence in either the western zones or western Berlin. He saw the world in terms of competing hegemonies, one in the East controlled by the Soviets and one in the West by the United States.

On April 12, 1945, Harry S. Truman, the Vice President of the United States, was elevated by the sudden death of Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Presidency of the United States. With the war in Europe near its triumphant end, Truman had immediately to deal with Soviet intentions to impose Communist regimes in Eastern Europe and possibly to exploit the economic breakdown in Western Europe. Simultaneously he had to seek military and political solutions in the war against Japan. He was interested when Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson explained the atomic project to him on April 25, 1945-- "If it explodes, as I think it will, I'll certainly have a hammer on those boys," "On July 24 I casually mentioned to Stalin that we had a new weapon of unusual destructive force," Truman recalled. "The Russian Premier showed no special interest. All he said was that he was glad to hear it and hoped we would make 'good use of it against the Japanese.'"

Truman established 12 points for the maintenance of World peace in a speech on Navy Day. The UK's Prime minister Attlee suggested to president that the five permanent members of the World Security Council -- Britain, America, Russia , France and China - share the atomic bomb secrets, meaning that the Big Five would be able to use the bomb against an aggressor nation, but no aggressor, except a member of the Council, would be able to retaliate. Truman later explained his policy on his State of the Union speech on January 7, 1953. Arguing that
The communist rulers are moving, with implacable will, to create greater strength in their vast empire, and to create weakness and division in the free world, preparing for the time their false creed teaches them must come: the time when the whole world outside their sway will be so torn by strife and contradictions that it will be ripe for the communist plucking.
To overcome this threat he suggested that:
Like the pioneers who settled this great continent of ours, we have had to carry a musket while we went about our peaceful business. We realized that if we and our allies did not have military strength to meet the growing Soviet military threat, we would never have the opportunity to carry forward our efforts to build a peaceful world of law and order--the only environment in which our free institutions could survive and flourish.
The first major step in the cold war to develope unity, strength and resolute will of the free nations according to him
was the determined and successful effort made through the United Nations to safeguard the integrity and independence of Iran in 1945 and 1946.

Cy Hungerford, "An Uncomfortable Situation." December 3, 1953.

This editorial cartoon comments on the political problems Senator Joseph McCarthy presented to President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Senator Joseph R. McCarthy was a little-known junior senator from Wisconsin until February 1950 when he claimed to possess a list of 205 card-carrying Communists employed in the U.S. Department of State. From that moment Senator McCarthy became a tireless crusader against Communism in the early 1950s, a period that has been commonly referred to as the "Red Scare." As chairman of the Senate Permanent Investigation Subcommittee, Senator McCarthy conducted hearings on communist subversion in America and investigated alleged communist infiltration of the Armed Forces. His subsequent exile from politics coincided with a conversion of his name into a modern English noun "McCarthyism," or adjective, "McCarthy tactics," when describing similar witch hunts in recent American history. [The American Heritage Dictionary gives the definition of McCarthyism as: 1. The political practice of publicizing accusations of disloyalty or subversion with insufficient regard to evidence; and 2. The use of methods of investigation and accusation regarded as unfair, in order to suppress opposition.] Senator McCarthy was censured by the U.S. Senate on December 2, 1954 and died May 2, 1957.

David Low, "Ssh! Welcome!" 23rd Oct. 1957

Macmillan wanted the repeal of the 1946 McMahon Act which blocked the sharing of nuclear infor- mation between the United States and the United Kingdom. At the Bermuda conference of March 1957, Macmillan succeeded at least in rebuilding a public front of Anglo-American solidarity. During August 1957, fears plagued Washington that Syria might be about to become a fully fledged Soviet satellite state. In a bid to thwart this development, Secretary of State John Foster Dulles agreed to pool efforts with the British in a joint Syria working group established during September 1957. The purpose of the group was to examine the options available to Britain and America to block the advance of Soviet influence in Syria through covert action.

It was with the example of the cooperation forged over Syria in mind that Macmillan responded to the momentous news of the launch of the Sputnik satellite on 4 October 1957.24 The launch prompted the dispatch of a crucial personal message from Macmillan to Eisenhower on 10 October. In it, Macmil- lan linked the Syrian experiment with the Sputnik challenge. Arguing that Sputnik had served to bring home the need to pool efforts to meet the formi- dable Russian threat, in a s diary entry, Macmillan wrote:
The Russian success in launching the satellite has been something equivalent to Pearl Harbour [sic]. The American cocksureness is shaken. . . . President is under severe attack for first time . . . Foster is under still more severe attack. His policies are said to have failed everywhere. . . . The atmosphere is now such that almost anything might be decided, however revolutionary.

Leslie Illingworth , "There's Nothing In It.", Punch, October 1951
After nationalizing the Iranian oil industry, the ring master, Prime minister Mohammed Mosaddeq of Iran, passes the circus hoop to the Egyptian Prime Minister Mustafa el-Nahhas, encouraging him to nationalize Suez Canal, and forcing the British lion to jump through the hoop.

Michael Cummings, "The problem is really one of not being taken for a ride..." Daily Express, 11 Jul 1951,

Muhammad Mossadegh, the Iranian prime minister overthrown by US and British agents in 1953, was a man who declined a salary, returned gifts, and collected tax arrears from his beloved mother. Frugality was allied to punctiliousness in this droopy-nosed aristocrat who enraged the West by insisting that Iran, not Britain, should own, sell, and profit from Iranian oil. A member of the princely Qajar family, he retained a noblesse-oblige gentility even as he became the symbol of postwar Iranian assertiveness.

Two years after Mossadegh’s nationalization of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC) in 1951, the CIA unloosed Kermit Roosevelt and his fellow American agents on Tehran to oust him. The operation, code-named TPAJAX, carried forward to a bloody denouement what Britain’s MI6 had first plotted. The objectives of a rising America and a declining Britain diverged; they overlapped just sufficiently for both to do their worst. Iran was fragile, and Mossadegh’s constitutionalism was a nuanced idea in an environment where bazaar toughs with nicknames like Brainless Shaban whipped up crowds.

Cummings used the following pieces of the news to represent a British perspective on Mossadegh

News: 9 Jul: Speeches by Ministers and Press comment in Teheran suggested that the Persian Government intended to ignore the International Court of Justice, in the Hague, recommendations on interim measures for dealing with the oil dispute.

News: 9 Jul: Mr Morrison, the Foreign Secretary, said that the Persians did not have the skill and experience to produce, refine and market the oil. He said the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company had provided houses, education, hospitals and clubs for its Persian employees.

News: 11 Jul: Mr Mason, Mr Drake's deputy, announced that Mr Cox Fields, the general manager of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, was visiting Goshen to arrange for the withdrawal of five British staff to Abadan. The company had offered the Persian temporary board the field with 333 Persian workers, to operate it themselves, but they had not responded. Oi

Leslie Illingworth, The Merchant of Persia. If you deny me, fie upon your law! (Shylock) So vital is the cause at stake to the nation that Persia cannot afford the slightest risk of an unfavourable decision. (Moussadek), Punch, June 1952.

Most of Iran's oil reserves were in the Persian Gulf area and had been developed by the British Anglo-Iranian Oil company and exported to Britain. For a number of reasons — a growing consciousness of how little Iran was getting from the Anglo-Iranian Oil company (AIOC) for its oil; refusal of AIOC to offer of a ‘50–50% profit sharing deal' to Iran as Aramco had to Saudi Arabia; anger over Iran's defeat and occupation by the Allied powers — nationalization of oil was an important and popular issue with "a broad cross-section of the Iranian people."[On 28 April 1951, the Majlis named Mosaddeq as new prime minister by a vote of 79–12. Aware of Mosaddeq's rising popularity and political power, the young Shah appointed Mosaddeq to the Premiership. On 1 May, Mosaddeq nationalized the AIOC, cancelling its oil concession due to expire in 1993 and expropriating its assets. The next month a committee of five majlis deputies was sent to Khuzistan to enforce the nationalization. Oil production came to a virtual standstill as British technicians left the country, and Britain imposed a worldwide embargo on the purchase of Iranian oil. In September 1951, Britain froze Iran's sterling assets and banned export of goods to Iran. It challenged the legality of the oil nationalization and took its case against Iran to the International Court of Justice at The Hague. The court found in Iran's favor,but the dispute between Iran and the AIOC remained unsettled. Under United States pressure, the AIOC improved its offer to Iran.


Herbert Block, The Cuban Missile Crisis, 1963. When U-2 spy planes sent by the CIA revealed that Soviet missile sites were under construction in Cuba, it led to a serious threat of nuclear war and tense negotiations between Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev.

It was the Cuban Missile Crisis in the autumn of 1962, that formed the backdrop to Khrushchev's fall from power. President Kennedy (embarassed by the Bay of Pigs and the Berlin Wall) was determined to stand firmly against the deployment (and arming) of Soviet missile bases in Cuba, a scant 90 miles from Florida. Khrushchev seemed equally determined to do so. In the tense, indeed terrifying, standoff of October, 1962, the Soviet fleet sailed towards Cuba, but, at the last minute, turned around. Score a point for Kennedy! It was as close to open, overt warfare that the United States and the Soviet Union came. This "balance of terror" made possible some lightening of tensions. It did, as well, have the effect of humiliating Khrushchev. In 1964, he was ousted from power.

Conrad, Denver Post (1963),
This cartoon pertains to the Cuban Missile Crisis, in which U-2 spy planes sent by the CIA revealed that Soviet missile sites were under construction in Cuba, leading to tense negotiations between Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev.

Next to the symbol of the Cold War – the Berlin Wall – Khrushchev says to Kennedy: “I just closed off what belongs to me. I’m willing to negotiate about the rest.” (Pulitzer Prize winner Edmund Valtman’s political cartoon collection)

In this cartoon, Herblock alludes to the Geneva disarmament negotiations, which stalled in March 1962. As the United States resumed atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons in response to the Soviet’s nuclear testing in the fall of 1961, the Soviet Union declared that they would test yet more weapons. Here, Herblock likens nuclear testing to alcoholism, with a drunken Soviet premier, Nikita Khrushchev, offering another round to President John F. Kennedy, who also appears to have over imbibed.


The US government saw South Vietnam's autocratic ruler, Ngo Dinh Diem, as a bulwark against Communism. But Diem was far from an ideal partner: Suspicious of anyone but his immediate family, he often frustrated American policy makers. But his success dealing with internal threats gave many hope that he would prove to be a reliable ally, so the United States invested time and money in supporting his regime.

By 1963, however, the Kennedy administration faced a dilemma. After government forces cracked down on Buddhist monks that spring, Kennedy pressed Diem for reforms. Instead, Diem imposed martial law, and special forces directed by his brother, Ngo Dinh Nhu, launched raids against Buddhist pagodas. When rumors of a possible coup began to spread in August, many in the administration wondered whether the United States should acquiesce, or indeed support the plotters.

Paul Labowsky, Berlin, 1963

Castro used the two communist rivals in his struggle against the US policies. Mao Zedong resented Russia's willingness to compromise with capitalism in "peaceful coexistence, and had aggressive plans for advancing Marxist-Leninist goals in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, and conflict with Soviet policies in those places was inevitable. Khrushchev badly miscalculated Cuban situation, which he feared would be invaded by Americans. He sought to parry the American advantage by installing short-range Soviet missiles with nuclear warheads in Cuba, supposedly under his control (not Castro's). On Tuesday, the 23rd, 1962, U.S. ships took up positions along a line 800 miles from Cuba. The naval blockade was traditionally an act of war, but the U.S. public saw it as a step in defending the country. Khrushchev and his colleagues were opposed to a "beautiful death" and a glorious showdown with the U.S. that Castro and Che Guevara had been advocating. He told Castro that "We aren't struggling against imperialism in order to die." Castro remained furious with Khrushchev, accusing him of having no cojones. Mao joined in the criticism. He denounced Soviet leadership for giving in to the U.S. The China-Soviet split was still on, and, in 1963, Mao would find fault with the Russians for signing the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty with the United States and Britain. Khrushchev responded by declaring that Mao's policies would lead to nuclear war.

Patrice Lumumba, by Bernard Safran (1924 – 1995)

Patrice Lumumba, was the first legally elected prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). He was assassinated, on 17 January, 1961. This heinous crime was a culmination of two inter-related assassination plots by American and Belgian governments, which used Congolese accomplices and a Belgian execution squad to carry out the deed.
Ludo De Witte, the Belgian author of the best book on this crime, qualifies it as "the most important assassination of the 20th century". The assassination's historical importance lies in a multitude of factors, the most pertinent being the global context in which it took place, its impact on Congolese politics since then and Lumumba's overall legacy as a nationalist leader.
Michael Cummings, Sunday Express, 21 Aug 1960

February 2002. The Belgian parliamentary commission investigating the death of Patrice Lumumba finds that the Belgian government carried a “moral responsibility”. Louis Michel apologizes to the Congolese people. No further legal action was taken.

Herblock, Washington Post, 1967.

The Vietnam War was extremely long as well as highly unpopular. America became involved in the War in 1955 and the first troops arrived in Vietnam in 1965. The war continued on into the 70’s, ending in 1973. Many groups of people on the home front opposed the Vietnam War and disagreed with American domestic and foreign policies.

Conrad, Nixon drills a hole in the wall of the Democratic headquarters and claims that he’s from the phone company. Los Angeles Times, 1972. “Watergate was a godsend to political cartoonists,” said Philadelphia Inquirer cartoonist Tony Auth.

Bill Garner, Détente, 1976
Henry Kissinger is stuck in in detente, while Leonid Brezhnev and Mao Tse-tung (Mao Zedong) are watching.

Joseph Stalin had not backed Mao against the nationalists during World War II, and his insistence that China pay cash for weapons during the Korean War was a source of grievance. Over time, the Soviets decided that Mao was unreliable and that China was a potential rival. When they withdrew their support of China's nuclear weapons program, the Chinese proceeded on their own, exploding their first atomic bomb in 1964 and a hydrogen bomb in 1967. Nixon and Kissinger sought to improve relations between the United States and its two communist opponents. While Americans viewed all communist nations as a united enemy, the relationship between the Soviet Union and China showed signs of strain by the early 1970s. Kissinger decided to use this widening rift to his advantage. If the United States improved its relationship with China, the Soviets would have no choice but to cooperate with the U.S., or risk become isolated.

She might Invaded Russia, The Brezhnev Doctrine of Soviet Foreign Policy
…Moscow’s goals in Czechoslovakia led most observers on both sides of the iron curtain to regard the intervention as a decisive Soviet victory. In the arena of east-West confrontation, the negative repercussions of the operation were short-lived. Relations with the west experienced some setbacks, particularly for the recently concluded Nuclear Non-proliferation treaty. The Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) was also delayed; President Johnson refused to travel to Leningrad in September 1968 and his successor, President Nixon, hesitated to reestablish contacts in 1969. Ultimately, however, the need to involve Moscow in negotiations with North Vietnam eclipsed American indignation, and Washington soon proved willing to mend fences in the interest of détente […] The invasion was most significantly experienced within the socialist community. It created instant tensions with the East European nations that had not taken part in the operation. As for the nations remaining in the Soviet-led alliance, the invasion confirmed that autonomous political reforms would not longer be tolerated. In the broader international socialist movement, the invasion seriously damaged Moscow ability to mount a united front against the Chinese… [Matthew J, OuitmetThe Rise and Fall of the Brezhnev Doctrine in Soviet Foreign Policy, ]

By 1977, the Soviet government, led by Leonid Brezhnev (1906-1982) and Aleksey Kosygin (1904-1980), was made up of old hard-line Communists who had been raised under the tutelage of Stalin. Valtman was prescient in his speculation that a new breed, who had never known the ideological fervor of the Russian Revolution, would lead the Soviet Union in a more modern direction.

Conrad, President Carter acting as Sisyphus, 1978. The cartoon portrays Carter attempting to push a giant boulder composed of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin up a mountain, referring to Carter’s struggles in brokering a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt.

"Explain slowly--what does he need all those weapons for, and why does he need nuclear reactors?"
The Washington Post, March 20, 1975, Herbert L. Block
Secretary of State Henry Kissinger delivering a box of nuclear material to Iranian Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. In 1975, the United States signed a cooperative agreement with then-ally Iran, permitting the U.S. to sell nuclear energy equipment to the middle eastern country.

Shah of Iran, le Nouvel Observateur, 4 novembre 1977, Wiaz
In 1971, when the 'junket' to Persepolis was organised, the Shah of Iran was embarking on one of the twentieth century's most blatant exercises in megalomania and tyranny. The sudden surge in Iran's oil revenues seemed to remove all limits to his two central ambitions: to enrich his own family, and to build the most powerful arsenal on earth, outside the United States and Russia. The following year, United States President Nixon and Secretary of State Kissinger visited the Shah, appropriately enough on their way back from peace talks in Russia. There, as representatives not merely of their country's government but also of its armaments industry, they wrote the Shah a blank cheque for any American arms he wanted to buy. In February 1973, the Pentagon revealed that the Shah had contracted to buy two thousand million pounds worth of arms from the United States, a figure which represented about a quarter of the entire national income of Iran. The American arms manufacturer Grunman spared no pains to win the Shah to the delights of their new jet fighter, the Tomcat. In his book, The Arms Bazaar, Anthony Sampson (now a colleague of Dr Owen's in the Social Democratic Party) described the scene near Washington when the Shah was shown the plane by Grunman:
The Tomcat performed amazing acrobatics touching down in front of the Shah and then shooting up again like a rocket. The Grunman men observed the Shah's delight as he illustrated the swoop with his hands.
The contract was signed, naturally not without a little bit of corruption. Houshang Levi, an 'arms lobbyist', got his cut, a standard 28 million dollars. The Shah's zest for more weapons obliged him to help himself more and more liberally to his country's straining coffers. As opposition grew to his policies, he redoubled his already monstrous power. His secret police, SAVAK, modelled itself on the KGB both for efficiency in detecting dissidents and in ruthlessness in dealing with them. Torture of political and religious dissenters was widespread, and well documented. [Paul Foot, (1983) HIM and his Friends, Socialist Register, Vol 20 ]
Iranian Tyrant by David Levine.
ُُThe cartoonist shows the Shah as a Frankenstein's beast who not only is not ashamed to repress and execute supporters of democracy and liberalism with the help of his dreaded "Savak" police, but he also considers this a badge of honor.

Ray Osrin, ...And No Further Interference Into The Internal Affairs Of Iran, Ohio -- Cleveland, 5th November 1980

This editorial cartoon depicting Ayatollah Khomeini with a voting machine with the names Reagan, Anderson and Carter on it under his robe, refers to Ayatollah's interference in the 1980 election, which indeed marked a true sea change in American history. Reagan was FDR in reverse, and made it clear that as president he intended to dismantle the welfare state created under the New Deal. Like his Republican predecessors Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge in the 1920s, Reagan planned to lower taxes on the rich in order to stimulate America's productive energies.

In June 1980 the shah, then in Cairo, died, prompting speculation that the crisis might end. Khomeini, however, had other ideas, demanding the return of the shah's assets, the release of Iranian assets in the United States, and a U.S. pledge not to interfere in Iranian affairs. When that wasn't forthcoming, on September 9 the Iranian government informed Carter through the West German foreign minister, who was in Tehran, that Khomeini was ready to discuss a resolution of the hostage situation. A breakthrough finally occurred on September 22, 1980, when Iraq and Iran went to war; suddenly Khomeini realized his nation could not take on two powerful enemies at once. According to Gary Sick "Suspicions about a deal between the Reagan campaign and Iran over the hostages have circulated since the day of President Reagan's inaugural, when Iran agreed to release the 52 American hostages exactly five minutes after Mr. Reagan took the oath of office. Later, as it became known that arms started to flow to Iran via Israel only a few days after the inauguration, suspicions deepened that a secret arms-for-hostages deal had been concluded."

Paul Conrad, Los Angeles Times (February, 1987).

The Iran-Contra affair was a constitutional crisis that embroiled the Reagan administration in its last two years (1986-88), raised the prospect of Ronald Reagan’s impeachment, clouded the presidency or George H.W. Bush and contributed to keeping it from extending to a second term. The scandal entailed illegal funding and arming of Nicaragua’s right-wing contras fighting the leftist Sandinista regime as well as illegally trading arms with Iran. Cartoon is inspired by Bernard Gillam and his attacks on James Blaine in 1884.

WASHINGTON, Nov 30, 2023- Henry Kissinger, the most powerful U.S. diplomat of the Cold War era, who helped Washington open up to China, forge arms control deals with the Soviet Union and end the Vietnam War, but who was reviled by critics over human rights, has died aged 100.

After the Cold War

"What do I do now?" Oleg Lukianov, 1989
An interpretation of the different policies of previous Soviet leaders and president Gorbachev.

Mikhail Gorbachev and a shattered hammer and sickle, Edmund Valtman, 1991

Edmund Valtman, I Can't Believe My Eyes!, 1991, The Waterbury Republican and The Middletown press, 1991;

Between 1985 and 1990 Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev (1931- ) steered Russia's foreign relations in a new conciliatory direction by working with Presidents Reagan and Bush to sign a series of arms control agreements, withdrawing Soviet troops from Afghanistan, and improving relations with China. He also transferred power from the Communist Party to elected legislatures in Russia's union republics. Such developments, along with the fall of the Berlin Wall and unification of East and West Germany, signaled the end of the Cold War. Gorbachev leads the funeral procession in Valtman's imaginative, skillfully realized drawing which memorializes the demise of communism as its hallowed trinity-Karl Marx (1818-1883), Vladimir Lenin (1870-1924), and Joseph Stalin (1879-1953) look on in consternation.

Dmitri Medvedev left the Russian presidency in May 2012. Many political cartoonists, portrayed him as the ultimate ‘mini-me’ to Vladimir Putin, the puppet on a string, the dog ordered to fetch, basically a doormat.

President Bush and his White House counsel Alberto Gonzales had done everything they could to unleash military and CIA interrogators from the constraints of the Geneva Convention and common human decency. The result was the sad spectacle that transpired inside the crumbling walls of Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq which is the subject of this cartoon.

According to Human Rights Watch, World Report 2006;
Authorized Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) interrogation techniques apparently include a notorious method the administration has renamed “waterboarding” (when practiced by Latin American dictatorships, it was called “the submarine”)—forcefully submerging a suspect’s head in water or otherwise making him believe he is about to drown. The director of the CIA has stated that waterboarding is a “professional interrogation technique.” As noted above, the Bush Administration asserts that U.S. treaty obligations to refrain from cruel, inhuman and degrading (CID) treatment do not apply to the conduct of nonmilitary U.S. personnel interrogating non-U.S. citizens outside of the United States. Led by Vice President Cheney, the Bush administration strongly resisted efforts by Congress to strengthen the legal ban against torture. A measure proposed by Republican Senator John McCain to prohibit torture and other ill-treatment of detainees anywhere by the U.S. military and the CIA passed 90-9 in the Senate but at this writing had not been approved by the full Congress at least in part because of administration objections

More than 100 professors of law and legal studies sent an open letter to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales in April 2006, criticizing his failure to condemn as illegal a number of abusive interrogation techniques, including waterboarding, exposure of detainees to extreme temperatures, forced standing, binding in stress positions, and severe sleep deprivation. The letter, whose signatories included several former government attorneys, asks Gonzales to issue a clear public statement regarding the humane treatment of detainees overseas, and to clarify that abuses such as waterboarding are subject to prosecution as crimes.
The 2006 Defense Authorization Act, passed by Congress in January 2006, contains new provisions clarifying that all individuals acting under the color of U.S. law categorically are prohibited from engaging in or authorizing cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of detainees in U.S. custody. These provisions were passed by Congress to rectify lack of clarity in regard to detention and interrogation techniques, and to prevent conduct that is prohibited by international law and illegal under domestic criminal law.
We are particularly concerned about your continuing failure to issue clear statements about illegal interrogation techniques, and especially your failure to state that “waterboarding”—a technique that induces the effects of being killed by drowning—constitutes torture, and thus is illegal. We urge you to make such a statement now.

Bush's Last Year as President, Mont Wolverton, 2007

Wall Street Bailout, Pat O'Connor, Los Angeles Daily News, 2008

Jacques Chirac's offer of friendship to George Bush

President Bush's Term Comes to an End, Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News, 2008

Steve Benson, Arizona Republic

Steve Sack, Minneapolis Star-Tribune

John Sherffius, Boulder Daily Camera
Pete King doesn't look like McCarthy, but he sure sounds like him: Are you now, or have you ever been, a Muslim? The very title of his hearings tells his bias from the beginning: "The Extent of Radicalization in the American Muslim Community (which presumes such radicalization exists) and That Community's Response" (which presumes it's been anything but cooperative). In fact, long before the hearings began, King had already announced his belief that 80 percent to 85 percent of American mosques are controlled by Islamic radicals; and that American Muslims have refused to cooperate with law enforcement officials in combating terrorism.

Neither of which is true. In fact, Richard Cohen of The Washington Post writes that a recent Duke University/University of North Carolina study found "a drop in attempted or actual terrorist activity by American Muslims -- 47 perpetrators and suspects in 2009, 20 in 2010." Perhaps more significantly, the report by UNC terrorism expert Charles Kurzman showed that "the largest single source of initial information" about alleged terrorist plots -- 48 out of 120 cases since September 11 -- "involved tips from the Muslim American community." In fact, the only law enforcement official to testify before King's committee was Los Angeles Sheriff Leroy Baca, who praised the cooperation of the Southern California Muslim community. Bill Press, "Joe McCarthy is born again -- as Peter King", Tribune Media Services, March 10, 2011

President Obama and the problem of Taliban, Nate Beeler, The Washington Examiner, 2011

On September 2013, Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote an op-ed in New York Times urging President Obama not to strike Syria, arguing that "It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation”. "American exceptionalism"-- a combination of simple nationalism and a belief that the United States can and should play a special role in shaping the world, was at the core of Obama's justification for American strike. Putin made a number of points, many of which were also made by American analysts, he stated:
The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.(...) Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government.(...) Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.(...) It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.

Iran's president has accused the West of nuclear "intimidation" in a UN General Assembly address boycotted by the United States and Israel. It was using a nuclear arms race to threaten other nations to accept the status quo, said Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. He told reporters later that Iran was ready for talks with the US. The West suspects Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons, but Tehran insists its nuclear programme is solely for peaceful purposes. 'Soulful breeze' It was Mr Ahmadinejad's eighth and final speech at a debate of the UN General Assembly before he steps down. "[The] arms race and intimidation by nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction by the hegemonic powers have become prevalent," he told the 193-nation annual gathering. BBC - 26 September 2012

Patrick Chappatte of Switzerland for the International Herald Tribune.
 On Friday afternoon of September 27, 2013, U.S. President Barack Obama and Iranian President Hasan Rouhani held a brief and apparently cordial conversation, the first such interaction between the leaders of the two countries since the Iranian Revolution in 1979. It concluded with small courtesies magnified by their historic import. Mr. Rouhani said, “Have a nice day,” in English. Mr. Obama thanked him and said goodbye in Farsi. The call between the leaders was the culmination of a dizzying week of diplomacy during the annual United Nations meetings in New York.

The Haaretz’ editorial cartoon shows Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Hassan Rouhani of Iran walking into the UN building in New York, in September 2013. Netanyahu holding his bomb diagram cartoon, that used in his 2012 speech is thinking, “Where is Mahmoud when I need him.” The former Iranian hard-line president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was an easier foil for Netanyahu.
According to Haaretz, (Sep. 20, 2013):
Call it a charm offensive, seduction sortie, bewitchment blitz or wooing war, one thing is certain: Iranian President Hassan Rohani is waging an all-out public relations onslaught on American hearts and minds that poses unprecedented new challenges for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli policymakers.

Following initial skirmishes and reconnaissance patrols over the past few weeks on Twitter and Facebook, Rohani has now unleashed a preparatory salvo of moderate-sounding, peace-hugging statements on NBC and in the Washington Post. The main thrust of his campaign will be rolled out next week in New York, where Rohani will use his status as the star sensation of this year’s United Nations General Assembly to launch a barrage of interviews, speeches and public appearances, all aimed at convincing America of Iran’s benevolent policies and benign nuclear plans.


President Joe Biden’s speech Tuesday night was nothing short of inspirational to a wounded, devastated and dejected Israel. For many Israelis, it was the speech they waited for, a speech they will not get from their own Prime Minister. Not that they expected it, he’s too busy with politics.
  Alon Pinkas, Haaretz, Oct 11, 2023

 In a move shadowed by the intensifying conflict in Gaza, the Biden administration has recently authorized the transfer of a substantial arms package to Israel. Despite widespread concerns over anticipated military actions in the Gaza Strip, particularly in southern Gaza’s Rafah region, Washington has greenlit the transfer of billions of dollars in weaponry, including bombs and fighter jets, to its long-standing ally Israel. 
MSN, March 2024

A cartoon in the Shvi'i magazine depicting Supreme Court of Justice President Esther Haut standing with a flag with the justice symbol impaled in an IDF soldier on January 4, 2024. The cartoon’s message appeared to echo rhetoric on the right implying that two recent High Court rulings harmed the country’s war effort against Hamas. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government suffered two major legal defeats with the High Court of Justice striking down legislation barring courts from evaluating government decisions on the basis  Reasonableness as a Standard for Judicial Review of Government's Decisions. and postponing the implementation of a bill meant to shield the prime minister from being ordered to recuse himself from office.

Israel Bar Association head Amit Becher called on Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara to open a criminal investigation into the publication of the cartoon, calling it an anti-democratic, anti-Zionist, fascist and severe caricature containing sharp incitement” against Hayut and the court system “as a whole.”

President Joe Biden said on January 2024, that he has made a decision on how to respond to the drone attack that killed three U.S. soldiers and injured dozens of others at a base in northeast Jordan.

Biden's remarks came after he vowed to retaliate and “hold all those responsible to account at a time and in a manner [of] our choosing"  for the deadly attack, which injured more than 30 soldiers. When asked if he holds Iran responsible for the attack, the president said he does “in the sense that they’re supplying the weapons to the people who did it.” 



La Presse, a digital-only French-language newspaper,  in Montreal on  March 20 2024 showed Netanyahu with pointed ears and claws, standing in a long coat on the deck of a sailing ship, reminiscent of the vampire in the 1922 film Nosferatu. Beneath it was a caption that read “Nosfenyahou en route to Rafah.”

Several of Trudeau’s ministers were  critical of the cartoon, calling it “egregious” and an “antisemitic trope,” and warning that it risked increasing already high tensions in Canada related to the fighting in Gaza.

By midday the cartoon had been taken down and La Presse issued an apology. 


Maarten Wolterink , 21 May 2024, The warrant delivery Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan has arrest warrants for both Benjamin Netanyahu and Yoav Gallant

Tjeerd Royaards, 21 May 2024, Wanted war criminal ICC's chief prosecutor Karim Khan seeks an arrest warrant against Netanyahu.

The Financial Crisis and Great Recession  

The sub-prime mortgage crisis of 2008

Eugene Fama, a Chicago University economics professor who in the 70s came up with the efficient markets hypothesis (EMH), which stated that financial markets price assets at their true worth based on all the publicly available information, encouraging the belief that the best thing to do was to pile in when prices were rising. Bubble-think, in other words.

The changes pushed through in the US and the UK in the 80s by Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher removed constraints on bankers, made finance more important at the expense of manufacturing and reduced union power, making it harder for employees to secure as big a share of the national economic cake as they had in previous decades. After a fierce lobbying campaign, Bill Clinton agreed to repeal the Glass-Steagall Act, which ensured a complete separation between investment and retail banks. The move heralded the coming of superbanks, huge behemoths that took in retail deposits and used them to take highly-leveraged punts in the markets.

As chairman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan, who was given an honorary knighthood in 2002 for his "contribution to global economic stability", cut interest rates and left them at rock-bottom levels for two years. Cheap borrowing costs encouraged Americans to load up on debt to buy homes, even when they had no savings, no income and no job prospects. These so-called sub-prime borrowers were the cannon fodder for the biggest boom-bust in US history. The housing collapse brought the global economy to its knees.

 In Britain Sir Mervyn King, who became Bank of England governor in 2003, failed to "lean against the wind" during the economic upswing, leaving interest rates too low, and then waited too long when the economy was nosediving into its most severe postwar recession before cutting bank rate. Gordon Brown's last big speech as chancellor of the exchequer before becoming prime minister, made at the Mansion House in June 2007 just as the financial crisis was about to break, praised the bankers for their remarkable achievements and predicted "the beginning of a new golden age for the City of London".

The US treasury secretary in 2008, Hank Paulson big mistake was to put Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae into conservatorship, wiping out the stakes of those who had invested $20bn in the two government-backed mortgage lenders over the previous 12 months. Unsurprisingly, there was no great rush among private investors to rescue Lehman Brothers when it ran into trouble the following week, and when the US treasury allowed the investment bank to go bust every financial institution in the world was seen as at risk.

Paulson triggered the biggest economic downturn since the Great Depression. (Larry Elliott, economics editor The Guardian, Friday 3 February 2012)

Financial Bailout of Greece by Eu, Arend van Dam, Netherlands, 2011

Schrank, The Independent, May 2012

David Cameron, François Hollande, Barack Obama, and Angela Merkel at the Delphic temple for oracle of Delphi. Obama asks, "Will Greece crash out of the eurozone, oh oracle?" The oracle replies, "That'll be another 100bn euros".Despite receiving billions of euros in bailout funds, Greece was still in danger of being forced to leave the euro (the famous Grexit). The cartoon relates to the G8 summit at Camp David, where the eurozone crisis was top of the agenda.

Frederick Deligne, Global Financial Crisis, Nice-Matin, Nice, France, 2011

Michael Ramirez, American Debt Crisis, 2009,

Michael Ramirez is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1994 and 2008, and a three-time Sigma Delta Chi, Society of Professional Journalism Award winner.

Tom Janssen, the European debt crisis, Dutch Cartoonist, 2011

Martin Rowson, Barack Obama and John Boehner's slow-moving attempt to find a compromise on debt ceiling, 2011, Guardian

Warren E. Buffett, the billionaire investor known as the Oracle of Omaha, in an op-ed titled Stop Coddling the Super-Rich, published on August 14, 2011 in the New York Time, made a strong case that he and his mega-rich peers should be paying more in taxes

OUR leaders have asked for “shared sacrifice.” But when they did the asking, they spared me. I checked with my mega-rich friends to learn what pain they were expecting. They, too, were left untouched. While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks... My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It’s time for our government to get serious about shared sacrificeWarren E. Buffett, Stop Coddling the Super-Rich, August 14, 2011

Uncle Sam bewildered in between the Tea Party, on the right, and Occupy Wall Street, on the left, movements, Kal, 2011. Kal finds the both movements loud and confusing for poor Uncle Sam.

The Tea Party demand vs Occupy Wall Street demands, Vines, 2011. It appears that Vines is more sympathetic towards the Tea Party's single demand.

An unsympathetic view from the right suggesting Occupy Wall Street would lead to communism.

Slippery Slopes, gives a cynical warning, Occupy Wall Street soon morphs into Occupy Private Ownership.

Time to Take Occupy Wall Street Seriously, Cam, 2011. Cam warns that if the movement is not taken seriously heads may role by guillotine.

An interesting take on the issue, a mea culpa admission.

"I liked it when it was Egypt, but not here," a play on the hypocrisy of men in suits

News that the International Monetary Fund initially demanded to loot a shocking 40% of savings from the private bank accounts of Cypriots underscores how residents of the Mediterranean country could be the latest victims of the infamous “IMF riot,” as the chief economist of the German Commerzbank calls for Italians to be similarly plundered for 15% of their savings.

According to Pimco CEO Mohamed El-Erian in an interview with CNBC ; the decision to loot the bank accounts of Cypriot savers could blow up Europe and lead to civil unrest across the continent. - El-Erian said that the European Union had lit two sticks of dynamite in backing a proposal that could see bank accounts raided for up to 15% of their value in what has ludicrously been described as a “wealth tax” yet amounts to nothing less than an act of wanton financial plunder. - “By including small depositors, they are risking social unrest, political disorder, and potentially an exit from the eurozone,” said El-Erian, referring to people with under 100,000 euros who will still be hit by a levy of 6.75% under current proposals. Savers with 500,000 euros in the bank face losing as much as 75,000 euros.

Americans awoke Tuesday, October, 1st, 2013, to the fact that nearly half the federal government was shut down, and to a certainty that one-sixth of the U.S. economy was profoundly altered via Obamacare. Senator Ted Cruz was leading the charge in the Senate (and apparently the House) to defund the Affordable Care Act. He stated
" I intend to donate my salary to charity for each day the government is shut down. Elected leaders should not be treated better than the American people, which is precisely why hardworking Americans deserve the same Obamacare exception that President Obama has already granted Members of Congress.”
Hundreds of thousands of "nonessential" government became idled for hours, days, weeks. Many federal offices were closed, workers furloughed while Congress tried to unknot itself. (Essential services — cutting Social Security checks, patrolling the border, keeping airports safe — were continued.) The Republicans argued that Obamacare's mandates are so unpopular that Americans will understand a shutdown.

The Republican-led House of Representatives insisted on delaying President Barack Obama's healthcare reform - dubbed Obamacare - as a condition for passing a bill. More than 700,000 federal employees faced unpaid leave with no guarantee of back pay once the deadlock was over. It was the first shutdown in 17 years. President Obama blamed the House of Representatives for the stalemate and said he would "keep working to get Congress to reopen the government [and] restart vital services".

The Snowden Affair

Steve Kelley's comment on the Obama Administration invasion of citizen's privacy

The whistle-blower Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and an employee of the defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, was responsible for one of the most significant leaks in US political history. He said he was content to sever his 'very comfortable life,' which included a six-figure salary, a girlfriend, a home in Hawaii and his family, to shine a light on the NSA's widening surveillance net.

'I'm willing to sacrifice all of that because I can't in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building... NSA chiefs were 'intent on making every conversation and every form of behavior in the world known to them, ... I don’t want to live in a world where there's no privacy and therefore no room for intellectual exploration and creativity. The government has granted itself power it is not entitled to.''

Scott Stantis, Obama and Bush-Nixon legacy
According to Lee-Anne Goodman,
"Not so long ago, a bad week for U.S. President Barack Obama was one that sparked comparisons to Jimmy Carter, a popular whipping boy for the right who was considered weak and ineffectual by many Americans. Seven months into his second term, and the Carter comparisons are a distant memory: now Obama’s being likened to former presidents Richard Nixon and George W. Bush, popular targets for the commander-in-chief’s liberal base.
Revelations about the Obama administration’s sweeping surveillance practices, as well as the ongoing investigation into the IRS’s targeting of Tea Party organizations, have resulted in a litany of comparisons to both former presidents in recent weeks. Edward Snowden himself, a libertarian who donated to Ron Paul’s presidential campaign in 2012, made the comparison in explaining why he leaked details of two top-secret U.S. government surveillance programs to two news organizations last week. “I believed in Obama’s promises,” Snowden told Britain’s The Guardian. “He continued with the policies of his predecessor. I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded

A hero or a traitor?
Oliver Stone, the Oscar-winning director whose profound understanding of freedom and democracy is a breath of fresh and uncontaminated air in Obama's era defended the American whistlebower Edward Snowden:
"It's a disgrace that Obama is more concerned with hunting down Snowden than reforming these George Bush-style eavesdropping techniques. (...) To me Snowden is a hero because he revealed secrets that we should all know, that the United States has repeatedly violated the fourth amendment".
John Cassidy of New Yorker agrees
"He is a hero. In revealing the colossal scale of the U.S. government’s eavesdropping on Americans and other people around the world, he has performed a great public service that more than outweighs any breach of trust he may have committed.(...) So, what did the leaks tell us? First, they confirmed that the U.S. government, without obtaining any court warrants, routinely collects the phone logs of tens of millions, perhaps hundreds of millions, of Americans, who have no links to terrorism whatsoever. If the publicity prompts Congress to prevent phone companies such as Verizon and A.T. T. from acting as information-gathering subsidiaries of the spying agencies, it won’t hamper legitimate domestic-surveillance operations—the N.S.A. can always go to court to obtain a wiretap or search warrant—and it will be a very good thing for the country."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel uses her mobile phone before a 2011 meeting at a European Union summit in Brussels. News magazine Der Spiegel reported that an apparent NSA document indicates Merkel's phone was first listed as a target in 2002. German Chancellor Angela Merkel complained to U.S. President Barack Obama after receiving information her phone may have been monitored. Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich was quoted as telling newspaper Bild am Sonntag he wants "complete information on all accusations" and that "if the Americans intercepted cellphones in Germany, they broke German law on German soil." He added wiretapping is a crime and "those responsible must be held accountable."

News magazine Der Spiegel, whose research prompted the government's response, reported that a document apparently from an NSA database indicates Merkel's cellphone was first listed as a target in 2002. The magnitude of the eavesdropping is what shocked us," former French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said in a radio interview. "Let's be honest, we eavesdrop too. Everyone is listening to everyone else. But we don't have the same means as the United States, which makes us jealous."

President Obama was aware of NSA spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel since 2010, German media have revealed. An NSA spokeswoman later denied the allegations. According to German Bild am Sonntag newspaper, which cited US intelligence sources, National Security Agency chief Keith Alexander briefed Obama on the bugging operation against Merkel in 2010. "Obama did not halt the operation but rather let it continue," an unnamed high-ranking NSA official told the newspaper. Moreover, the paper said, the US president later ordered the NSA to prepare a comprehensive dossier on Merkel.

Obama and the Arab Spring 

Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, Egypt's top military commander, told the country that Egypt's constitution had been suspended and President Morsi had been replaced by the head of the constitutional court until new elections could be held. No timetable for those elections were spelled out. The general warned the Egyptian people to protest peacefully and said the authorities would not tolerate any violence.

"US Secretary of State John Kerry has again refrained from characterising the ousting of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi by the military as a coup. Washington's hesitation to use the term has drawn accusations from the pro-Morsi camp that the US was complicit in the coup. For the White House, it is an on-going and agonising determination that has legal and possibly even security implications". BBC

Despite his failings, and there were plenty, President Mohamed Morsi was Egypt’s first democratically elected leader, and his overthrow by the military on Wednesday was unquestionably a coup. It would be tragic if Egyptians allowed the 2011 revolution that overthrew the dictator Hosni Mubarak to end with this rejection of democracy. Crisis in Egypt NY Times, Editorial. July 3, 2013

The impasse into which Egypt has been forced by the army's intervention in politics is daily becoming more dangerous. Every time the security forces open fire, their mission of bringing back order and restoring social peace becomes less credible. You cannot advance toward legitimacy over the bodies of martyrs. Editorial The Guardian, Sunday 28 July 2013

Steve Bell, ceci n'pas un coup,  The Guardian, Monday 4 November 2013
... First, the hearing was delayed because Mohamed Morsi’s refusal to recognise the authority of the court stretched to a refusal to wear the required prison uniform. Then his repeated interruptions – “this is not a legitimate trial, this trial is part of the coup” – and the chanting of “illegal, illegal” by his 14 co-defendants, proved unendurable and matters were put off until January. Out on the streets, the last-minute change of venue, aimed at avoiding mass demonstrations, was only partially successful.

It is difficult not to concede Mr Morsi’s point. Unpopular or not, he was still democratically elected. Not only was his toppling in July a coup; what has followed gives little cause for optimism. More than 2,000 Muslim Brotherhood supporters have been killed in clashes with security forces, the organisation’s activities have been banned, and the state-backed media has gone into overdrive whipping up anti-Morsi and anti-US sentiment in equal measure. With freedoms increasingly restricted, dissenters harassed, and the military back on top, Egypt feels uncomfortably as if it has reverted to pre-Arab Spring type, albeit without Hosni Mubarak. The Independent, Editorial, Monday 4 November 2013

On March, 28 2014 Field Marshal Abdul Fattah al-Sisi's announced that he has resigned as defence minister to run for the presidency. The announcement was broadcast live by Egyptian broadcast media.
Randall Enos' illustrations have appeared in The New York Times, NBC, National Lampoon, Playboy, Boy's Life, Atlantic, Time, Sports Illustrated, Fortune and Forbes

I've been working at this stand for 52 years making pretty pitchers fer the people in just about every magazine and newspaper in the land except that damned New Yorker who won't return my calls.

Carlos Latuff, Brazil
MOST generals who seize power promise to return their country swiftly to the state of democratic civilian rule from which it lapsed owing to the misdemeanours of venal or incompetent politicians. Often, alas, no suitable civilian can be found. So the general swaps his uniform for a business suit, crushes the opposition and proceeds to establish a pliant parliament. Egypt’s strongman, Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, is treading this familiar path. But he will do nothing to resolve Egypt’s many problems; he may lead his country into its next crisis. Economist, Oct 10th 2015


ISIS and Its Enablers

Fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS)
advanced through mostly Sunni areas of Iraq in June 2014,

Wealthy individuals and religious foundations in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and elsewhere in the Gulf have channelled millions of dollars to the anti-Assad opposition, though it is not clear with what degree of official connivance."There is Saudi money flowing into Isis but it is not from the Saudi state," said Lina Khatib of the Carnegie Foundation.

According to Clinton’s leaked memo, Saudi donors constituted “the most significant source of funding to terrorist groups worldwide.” Radical Salafists across the Middle East receive ideological and material backing from within the kingdom.

A Wikileaks cable clearly quotes then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton saying "donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide." She continues: "More needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaeda, the Taliban, LeT and other terrorist groups." And it's not just the Saudis: Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates are also implicated in the memo. The West may have to pay a price for its alliance with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf monarchies, which have always found Sunni jihadism more attractive than democracy...Saudi Arabia has created a Frankenstein's monster over which it is rapidly losing control. The same is true of its allies such as Turkey which has been a vital back-base for Isis and Jabhat al-Nusra by keeping the 510-mile-long Turkish-Syrian border open.

On Oct. 2, 2018, Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi disappeared after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. Khashoggi, who at the time   resided in Virginia and worked as a columnist for the Washington Post, was one of the Western world's most prominent critics of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) — a man who was known to had little tolerance for dissent but often was hailed as a modernist by Western media.

 According to an anonymous Turkish official, a Saudi assassin squad flew into Istanbul on private jets and waited for Khashoggi inside the consulate. The squad included a physician who specializes in autopsies. They also took a bone saw.

President Trump has come under fire for his tepid response to Khashoggi's disappearance. Multiple cartoonists used this news as inspiration to illustrate Trump's seeming adulation of dictators. Inquirer columnist Trudy Rubin echoed this sentiment in a recent column about Khashoggi, writing:"Trump has embraced authoritarian leaders who openly threaten journalists with murder, such as Filipino leader Rodrigo Duterte, or who silently tolerate such murders, such as Vladimir Putin."

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on February 2019, sharply rejected an assertion that the Trump administration is complicit in a cover-up of the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Pompeo's remarks came after Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., accused the administration of turning a "blind eye" to evidence that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman personally ordered Khashoggi’s killing. "This amounts to the Trump Administration aiding in the cover up of a murder," Kaine, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement. "America should never descend to this level of moral bankruptcy." 

The top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, also slammed the White House's refusal to comply with the law. “Everyone involved in this gruesome crime must be identified and held accountable," McCaul said. "When the United States fails to lead, we compromise our integrity and abandon those pursuing justice around the world."

Asked about the allegations from Kaine and others, Pompeo said they were "dead wrong." "Sen. Kaine is just dead wrong," Pompeo told reporters traveling with him in Budapest. "America is not covering up for a murder."

Steve Breen, Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist for the San Diego Union-Tribune. December 2015
"The Most Important Question About ISIS That Nobody Is Asking" in which we asked who is the one "breaching every known law of funding terrorism when buying ISIS crude, almost certainly with the tacit approval by various "western alliance" governments, and why is it that these governments have allowed said middleman to continue funding ISIS for as long as it has?  Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge

The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, bolstered by the electoral triumph of his conservative Islamist Justice and Development Party, or A.K.P., has shown a troubling penchant for benign neglect toward the jihadi Islamists — enough for them to establish a Turkish network.

What does Erdogan — in theory a key American ally leading a NATO state — see in the knife-wielding jihadis of the Islamic State? They are useful in confronting Turkey’s nemesis, the Kurds, who have taken over wide sections of northern Syria and established self-government in an area they call Rojava. That in turn has raised the specter of a border-straddling Kurdistan, the nightmare of the Turkish republic. Roger Cohen, NY Times,NOV. 7, 2015

The Obama administration signaled for the first time on June 16, 2014 that it was willing to enter into discussions with Iran. In an indication of how sensitive in Washington any such cooperation would be, officials quickly rowed back from remarks by Kerry, who had declined in an interview to rule out military cooperation with Tehran. But officials later insisted that any contact would be limited to informal discussions that would take place on the margins of nuclear talks in Vienna. 

In the letter dated 9 October, 191and sent after US troops were pulled out of Syria, Mr Trump told Mr Erdogan: "Don't be a tough guy. Don't be a fool!" President Trump was urging Turkey not to launch a military offensive against Kurdish-led forces in northern Syria, but Mr Erdogan ignored this request.

Saudi  Connection 



Saudi Arabia and Human Rights Council, Tom Janssen, The Netherlands.
The September 2015 decision to appoint a Saudi diplomat to chair the UNHRC's Consultative Group, responsible for the selection of dozens of experts charged with addressing human rights cases in countries around the world, has been met with astonishment given Saudi Arabia's human rights record.

David Horsey, Los Angeles Times

Donald Trump's 'chaos' presidency

Donald Trump went from a long-shot contender to the Republican party's presumptive nominee for president in April 2016. There was much Republican hand-wringing over his presumptive nomination to face against his Democratic challenger to the White House, but the boastful billionaire said he doesn’t care, and it doesn’t matter. A growing chorus of senior Republican leaders joined the “anything but Trump movement,” including 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the last two Republican presidents, George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush.

Donald Trump, like many a businessman-turned-politician before him, argued that if he was elected, he would bring his managerial acumen to Washington, making government run like a business with efficiency and skill. What we’ve seen instead is the most chaotic and incompetent White House in living memory. And it’s only getting worse. 
Paul Waldman July 27, 2017, The Washington Post

Media outlets including Vanity Fair have noted that [Richard] Spencer, at a 2016 alt-right conference, said, "To be white is to be a striver, a crusader, an explorer and a conqueror. We build, we produce, we go upward. And we recognize a central lie of American race relations. We don’t exploit other groups -- we don’t gain anything from their presence. They need us, and not the other way around. ... America was, until this past generation, a white country, designed for ourselves and our posterity. It is our creation, it is our inheritance, and it belongs to us."  (...)

Stephen Miller was ‘claimed as a mentee by Richard Spencer, who is an avowed open white nationalist’, ..., According to Vanity Fair, Spencer says he became aware of Miller when both were at Duke University and was "impressed" with his communications ability. 

 [Steve] Bannon, a senior counselor to the president, did previously run before joining the Trump presidential campaign. And he did tell Mother Jones, "We’re the platform for the alt-right," during an interview at the 2016 Republican National Convention.

Sebastian Gorka "wore the medal of Vitézi Rend, a Nazi organization." Gorka serves as deputy assistant to the president and also appears on television to represent the administration. But Gorka has attracted controversy for, among other things, wearing symbols of a successor group to Vitézi Rend, an honorary order that had originally been founded in 1920 by Miklós Horthy, a Hungarian ally of Adolf Hitler.
 -- Louis Jacobson, August 15th, 2017, Politifact

The dismay expressed by many Republicans about President Trump’s response to the events in Charlottesville last weekend will probably further increase the already existing speculation about whether Trump will be the Republican nominee again in 2020. (...) Republican elected officials seem fed up with Trump’s incompetence and name-calling. There are also signs that Mike Pence is building a political operation with 2020 in mind.
-- Richard Skinner, Aug 15, 2017, Vox

Retired Army lieutenant general Michael Flynn who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, earned numerous awards during his military career and was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2012 to run the Defense Intelligence Agency, the top military intelligence service in the country. After two years on the job, Flynn was forced out and retired from the military. He launched a consulting firm and reemerged in 2016 as a Trump adviser. He became a prominent campaign surrogate and gave a polarizing speech at the GOP convention calling for Hillary Clinton to be jailed.

After Trump won the election, he picked Flynn to become his national security adviser. In a series of calls with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, Flynn undercut Obama's newly announced sanctions against Russia for meddling in the 2016 election. In the calls, Flynn also undermined the official US position toward a United Nations resolution about Israel, according to court filings.

These calls were intercepted by routine US surveillance of foreign diplomats, and US officials leaked details to the press, a potentially illegal leak because the information is highly classified. Flynn misled his fellow Trump officials by saying sanctions hadn't been discussed, and those officials repeated Flynn's false denials on television. Because the calls had been intercepted by US intelligence, the FBI and Justice Department knew that the public explanation from team Trump wasn't true. Days after Trump took office, the FBI questioned Flynn about the calls, and he told four distinct lies, according to court filings.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired by President Donald Trump, according to White House officials’ statements on March  2018. He was in office for a little over a year, one of the shortest tenures in modern history. The former Exxon Mobil CEO, whose nomination was initially greeted warmly by prominent foreign policy hands, left office without any major accomplishments. 

Many expected Tillerson to be one of the “adults in the room,” helping Secretary of Defense James Mattis rein in some of Trump’s wildest ideas. His attempts to play that role backfired — his ham-handed attempts to manage Trump alienated the president, who has reportedly complained about his “totally establishment” views on foreign policy.

After months of escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States, officials made a stunning announcement on  March 2018: Kim Jong-un, the North’s leader, had invited President Trump to meet and discuss his country’s nuclear program — and Mr. Trump accepted. The report was particularly surprising given that no sitting American president has ever met with a North Korean leader, and that Mr. Trump himself had ruled out direct talks unless North Korea agreed to take measurable steps toward relinquishing its nuclear arsenal.

On June 14th 2018 Rob Rogers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial cartoonist, announced that, after a weeks-long conflict with his editors regarding unpublished anti-Trump cartoons, he has been fired from the paper. 

... But in the past few weeks, editorial director Keith Burris and publisher John Robinson Block have refused to publish six of Rogers’s cartoons, all criticizing Trump or his policies. Block and Burris have also rejected many of Rogers’s rough sketch ideas for several months. This wasn’t the first time Block has used his position to defend President Trump’s actions; in January he demanded an editorial run in the Post-Gazette and the Toledo Blade (where he is also the publisher) supporting Trump’s use of the term “shithole countries.” I realize now I didn’t recognize this other danger of an authoritarian president: his enablers and the willing supporters who squash dissent and help attack the free press and subvert the Constitution.(...) 


The purpose of an editorial cartoonist is to hold politicians and powerful institutions accountable — and we all know how little President Trump thinks he, his family or his sycophants should be held accountable. Rogers was the first American editorial cartoonist to lose his job as a result, but he won’t be the last. Trump has many “fixers.” -- Democracy Dies in Darkness, Ann Telnaes, The Washington Post, June15, 2018

On May 2018, Trump declared  that he was withdrawing from the   Iran nuclear deal, unraveling the signature foreign policy achievement of his predecessor Barack Obama, isolating the United States from its Western allies and sowing uncertainty before a risky nuclear negotiation with North Korea.

The decision, while long anticipated and widely telegraphed, left the 2015 agreement reached by seven countries after more than two years of grueling negotiations in tatters. The United States  then reimposed the stringent sanctions it imposed on Iran before the deal and  introduced new penalties.

The next day, he met Trump in the Oval Office. Mattis made his case for keeping troops in Syria. Trump rejected his arguments. Thirty minutes into the conversation, Mattis told the president, “You’re going to have to get the next secretary of defense to lose to ISIS. I’m not going to do it.” He handed Trump his resignation letter, a letter that would soon become one of the most famous documents of the Trump presidency thus far. The Atlantic- October 2019

The Times is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op-Ed essay. We have done so at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure. We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers. -- OP Ed. New York Times , Sept. 5, 2018

President Trump is facing a test to his presidency unlike any faced by a modern American leader. It’s not just that the special counsel looms large. Or that the country is bitterly divided over Mr. Trump’s leadership. Or even that his party might well lose the House to an opposition hellbent on his downfall. The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.

On December 7, 2018,  the US media  reported that Kelly and Trump were no longer on speaking terms and that Kelly was expected to resign in the coming days. On December 8, Trump announced that Kelly would be leaving at the end of the year.

The typical thing to say about Kelly is that he brought order to the White House process. He was the “grown-up in the room” who enforced discipline, but, ultimately, even Kelly, a retired Marine Corps general, could not curb President Donald Trump’s most egregious instincts.

President Donald Trump’s entire impeachment mess began over his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden’s family and Democrats with the help of his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. But even as an impeachment vote in the House Judiciary Committee loomed, both men continued to coordinate on Giuliani’s Ukraine efforts on behalf of his powerful client.

Trump became the third president in American history to be impeached in December 2019, when the House of Representatives voted to impeach him on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress over the Ukraine scandal. 

Democratic lawmakers say Trump allegedly withheld about $400 million in military aid while pressuring Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky into launching a pair of investigations that would benefit Trump in the 2020 election. 

“If the Senate doesn’t permit the introduction of all relevant witnesses and of all documents that the House wants to introduce, because the House is the prosecutor here, then the Senate is — is engaging in an unconstitutional and disgusting cover-up,” Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat, said. 

Alan Dershowitz, one of Trump's lawyers, argued that a quid pro quo involving a president’s political benefit was fine because all presidents believe their elections are in the public’s interest. “If a president does something which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment,” he said. 

Even as key Republican senators acknowledged Trump’s guilt on charges of abusing power and obstructing Congress, they defied public opinion on  January 31, 2020, by voting to block witnesses and documents, paving the way for the president to be acquitted and claim exoneration.

The Senate acquitted President Trump of charges that he abused his power and obstructed Congress, as Republicans turned back an election-year attempt by House Democrats to remove him from office for pressuring a foreign power to incriminate his political rivals. Senator Mitt Romney of Utah voted to convict President Trump on one of the two impeachment charges, making him the only Republican to support removing Mr. Trump from office.

The prospect that Barr had misled senators about his independence emerged on March 24, when he released a four-page summary of Mueller's report that eerily echoed the language of the White House propaganda machine. Barr confirmed his critics' worst suspicions on April 18, when he preempted the release of the redacted report with a news conference in which he portrayed White House efforts to derail the investigation as the reasonable reaction of a president "frustrated and angered" about the allegations against him. -- 
Brian Dickerson, USA TODAY, May 2, 2019

More than 1,000 former U.S. Justice Department officials on  February 2020 called for Attorney General William Barr to resign over his handling of the trial of a longtime adviser of President Donald Trump. The former officials, who served under both Republican and Democratic administrations, criticized Barr, the country's top law enforcement officer, for overruling his own prosecutors in a case that has prompted accusations that the Trump administration is weakening the rule of law.
The Justice Department abandoned prosecutors' initial recommendation to give the veteran Republican operative Roger Stone seven to nine years in prison after he was found guilty in November of seven counts of lying to Congress, obstruction and witness tampering. That prompted all four prosecutors to quit the case.
Roger Stone,  has a tattoo of Richard Nixon’s face on his upper back. Right in the center, under his neck, there’s a smiling, black and white portrait of the 37th president known “Tricky Dick.” “The reason I’m a Nixonite is because of his indestructibility and resilience,” Stone told The New Yorker. “He never quit. Stone added in the interview that he got the tattoo at the Ink Monkey tattoo shop in Venice Beach.

John R. Bolton, the former national security adviser, says in his new book that the House in its impeachment inquiry should have investigated President Trump not just for pressuring Ukraine but for a variety of instances when he sought to use trade negotiations and criminal investigations to further his political interests.

The book, “The Room Where It Happened,” was obtained by The New York Times in advance of its scheduled publication  and became a political lightning rod in the thick of an election campaign and a No. 1 best seller on Amazon. The Justice Department went to court for the second time  seeking to stop publication even as Mr. Trump’s critics complained that Mr. Bolton should have come forward during impeachment proceedings rather than save his account for a $2 million book contract.

Jeff Sessions is buying a drink for BB!

CNN reported  on December 2020 that Trump was frustrated with Barr for saying in an interview that the Justice Department had found no evidence of widespread election fraud. The two men had a "contentious," lengthy meeting inside the West Wing on  that  subject, according to a person familiar with the meeting. Later, in a press interview, Trump declined to say whether he trusted Barr, a sign that the attorney general, like his predecessor Jeff Sessions, has fallen out of favor with the president.

Covid -19 Endemic and Insurrection

On April 23rd 2020, Trump  suggested during the White House briefing that experts look into creating injectable treatments for coronavirus using sunlight or disinfectants, prompting public ridicule and Reckitt Benckiser, the company that makes Lysol, to issue a warning to not ingest its products. The next day, Trump claimed he was joking.

"So supposing we hit the body with a tremendous — whether it's ultraviolet or just a very powerful light — and I think you said that hasn't been checked because of the testing," Trump said, speaking to Bill Bryan, who led the Department of Homeland Security's science and technology division, during the briefing. "And then I said, supposing you brought the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or some other way, and I think you said you're going to test that, too." 

He added: "I see the disinfectant that knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning? As you see, it gets in the lungs, it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it would be interesting to check that."

President Trump said in the Oval Office Thursday (May 28, 2020) that he would seek to shut down Twitter if it continued to not be "honorable" in its fact-checking and if there was a legal way to do so.
Reality check: Trump does not have the unilateral power to shut down social media platforms. Legal experts agree that doing so would be a violation of the First Amendment.

The big picture: The comment came as Trump signed an executive order targeting protections for Big Tech companies — a move catalyzed by the president's anger toward Twitter for issuing its first-ever fact-check on one of his tweets, which included misinformation on mail-in voting.

What he's saying: "If Twitter were not honorable, if you're going to have a guy like [Yoel Roth, Twitter's head of site integrity] being your judge and jury, I think just shut it down as far as I'm concerned." -- Ursula Perano, Axios, May 28, 2020 -

On June 1, 2020, police reinforced by National Guard troops forcefully pushed back protesters outside the White House Monday evening to clear a way for President Donald Trump to visit a church, just minutes after he said he wanted a military show of force against violent protests gripping the country.

As television cameras showed live images of Trump’s quick stop at the historic St. John’s Church, where a small fire caused damage to its basement during protests the night before, the president posed with a Bible and with senior members of administration. Moments before, police had cleared largely peaceful demonstrators from the area, using tear gas and beating some with batons and shields, including at least one news photographer.

On Monday (June 1, 2020) night, as federal law enforcement officers fired rubber bullets and chemical gas at protesters outside the White House, President Trump stood in the Rose Garden and issued a threat. If the nation’s governors don’t call up National Guard troops to “dominate the streets,” Trump said, “I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them.” After Trump made the threat, three words began trending on Twitter: the Insurrection Act. 

 On Wednesday,  (June 3, 2020) Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper said he does not support using active-duty military forces to deal with the unrest in U.S. cities — a statement that put him at odds with his boss. Then Trump was denounced by his former Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, for the threat to invoke the Insurrection Act and dividing Americans. -- Washington Post


President Donald Trump announced on Twitter on Monday 9th November, 2020  that he has fired Secretary of Defense Mark Esper. The President jettisoned Esper two days after his Democratic opponent Joe Biden was projected as the winner of the presidential election, a conclusion that Trump  refused to accept.



President Donald Trump's extraordinary call this weekend in which he asked Georgia's top election official to "find" enough votes for him to overturn the state's election results has threatened to exacerbate a schism among top Republicans -- and has put a renewed focus on Vice President Mike Pence. --ABC News,  Ben Gittleson 4 January 2021

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi accused U.S. President Donald Trump of inciting “…an armed insurrection against America,” adding that Trump committed a “seditious act” in her opinion by instigating and directing the angry mob which descended on the Capitol building. 
January 7 2021 

A statement Trump made in the midst of the 2016 election about the staunch loyalty of his supporters; “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters,” was challenged by Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House of Representatives,   showing him her signed  second Trump impeachment,  a week before he left office, she reminded him that no one is above the law! 

Seven Republican senators joined with Democrats in voting to convict former President Donald Trump at the conclusion of his second impeachment trial.  The vote was  57 guilty to 43 not guilty  -- However, 67 guilty votes needed to convict Trump.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (GOP), said the rioters had been "fed wild falsehoods by the most powerful man on Earth. Because he was angry he'd lost an election." "Former President Trump's actions that preceded the riot were a disgraceful, disgraceful dereliction of duty," added McConnell. "Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day."

On August 2021, Joe Biden  removed all U.S. troops from Afghanistan, and without the support of the U.S. military, the pro-Western government in Kabul fell to the Taliban in a matter a weeks.

During the United States' 20-year mission in the country, a generation of young women and girls were able to get an education and work in many parts of society. Now their future is bleak under the fundamentalist rule of the Taliban. 

The G7 met to debate Afghanistan. The decisions were already made. Knowing the US wouldn’t budge on extending an evacuation deadline, G7 leaders focused instead on vague conditions for dealing with the Taliban.  -- Politico, August 24, 2021

Student Protests  

Pope Benedict's Resignation 

On February 28, 2013, in an unexpected move, Pope Benedict XVI -- born Joseph Ratzinger -- announced, that he is to resign. Benedict was elected pope in 2005 after the death of Pope John Paul II. In his statement, Pope Benedict -- who was turning 86 in April -- said he had come to the certainty "that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry."

The big takeaway from the plane chat, or at least the big media takeaway, was the pope's acknowledgement that gay priests exist and that they have as much right to their affinity with God as their heterosexual counterparts. When asked about the so called "gay lobby" within the Vatican, the pope replied:
When I meet a gay person, I have to distinguish between their being gay and being part of a lobby. If they accept the Lord and have goodwill, who am I to judge them? They shouldn't be marginalized.
(...)When the thorny issue of women in the church came up, the pope kindly acknowledged that a woman's role "does not end just with being a mother and with housework," (something mainstream society figured out about a century ago). He went on to pay lip service to the need to expand women's role in some way, but while he had no concrete ideas on what this might entail, he made it clear than it would never include the right to be ordained alongside men:
On the ordination of women, the church has spoken and said no. John Paul II, in a definitive formulation, said that door is closed.
Sadhbh Walshe, The Guardian. Wednesday 31 July 2013

After years of tense relations and inflammatory rhetoric between Muslims and the Vatican that sparked protests across Muslim-majority countries, Pope Francis sought to ease tensions, emphasized mutual values and shared beliefs, kissed a Quran and pushed for dialogue with Muslim communities since his election. His efforts mended a deep wedge between the two communities, as Muslims realized that the pope has come to embody religious values to which their communities also adhere. The growing relationship between the two faiths flourished as Pope Francis for the first time toured the U.S. in September 2015 amid growing anti-Muslim sentiment from Republican and conservative leaders.


Bro Jonathan (the old name for Uncle Sam) trying to seduce Miss Canada, while the chaperon, John Bull, falling asleep.

In 1867, Canada became a federation under the British North America Act. The anxiety over being annexed by the US was one of the key contributing factors in the creation of Canadian Confederation. In the election of 1864 the Republican Party used annexation issue to attract Irish Americans vote. An annexation bill introduced by General Banks was passed in the United States House of Representatives in July of 1866. The bill authorized the United States President to
"publish by proclamation that, from the date thereof, the States of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Canada East, and Canada West, and the Territories of Selkirk (present-day Manitoba), Saskatchewan, and British Columbia, with limits and rights as by the act defined, are constituted and admitted as States and Territories of the United States of America" (Library and Archives of Canada)
The United States was to pay the Hudson’s Bay Company ten million dollars for the release of all of the property.

We in Canada Seem to Have Lost All Idea of Justice, Honor and Integrity, by J.W. Bengough,
The Mail, September 26th, 1873.
In this cartoon related to Pacific Scandal, the first major political scandal in Canada after Confederation, Macdonald responds to Alexander Mackenzie, the leader of the opposition: “I admit I took the money and bribed the electors with it. Is there anything wrong about that?” The scandal led to the resignation of Macdonald, and a transfer of power to Mackenzie's Liberals.

The scandal was related to John A. Macdonald and his Conservative colleagues George-Etienne Cartier solicitation of financial contribution from Hugh Allan, a Montreal shipping magnate and railway builder, for the 1872 general election, in exchange for giving Allan the lucrative contract to build the railway to B.C. . The Conservatives needed money to fight the election, particularly in Ontario and Québec, where a number of seats were in jeopardy. Despite Allan’s generosity in providing more than $350,000, Macdonald did poorly in the vote.

John Wilson Bengough, originally a Toronto journalist, was Canada’s first important political cartoonist. His career paralleled the latter part of Macdonald's.

In 1896 the Liberals under Wilfrid Laurier came into power. Between 1896 and 1905 Clifford Sifton, the main character in this cartoon, who became the new Minister of the Interior, assumed responsibility for immigration and settlement in Canada. He offered Canada as a commodity to potential overseas migrants, particularly to the American farmers, who had skills and capital. Sifton, and his successors, believed the darker the skin, the more 'foreign' the immigrant was. The ideal immigrant should have had the same religious, political and social institutions as the British.

Wilfrid Laurier and Frederick Debartzch Monk Issues: Separate School, Autonomy Bill, and Dual Language, N. M'Connelly

Wilfrid Laurier, leader of the Liberal Party 1887–1919 and prime minister 1896–1911, was Canada's first French Canadian Prime Minister. Guided by his belief in the future independence of Canada, he resisted every effort the British Empire made toward federation of the empire in political, economic, or military terms. Nonetheless, in 1899, he agreed to help defray the costs of transportation and material of Canadians wishing to fight for England in the South African War; this conciliatory stance would bring reproach from those French Canadians fiercely opposed to any participation. Frederick Debartzch Monk’s was thus the only Conservative mp from Quebec to survive 15 years of Wilfrid Laurier’s regime. Throughout his political career, He tried to reform the Conservative party along the lines of the nationalist principles supported by the majority of French Canadians, and he worked to give it credibility in Quebec so it might become the pre-eminent force in the province.The South African War from 1899 to 1902 led him to demand increasing autonomy for Canada in all political, military, and commercial relations with Great Britain. On 18 November 1901, he put forward a political program entitled “Canada for Canadians,” which was based on respect for the two founding European “races,” autonomous in its relations with the British empire, and capable of directing its own economic development.

"What price unity?", Gib Potter , Saskatoon,1942
William Lyon Mackenzie won the Liberal party leadership in 1919 and led the party into government two years later. After a brief stint in opposition in 1926, the voters returned him to power later in the year. He lost the 1930 election, but was back on top in 1935. He is Canada's longest serving prime minister who redefined Canada's role in the British Empire. In fact, in his assertion that Canada would not necessarily follow the dictates of the government in London, King, more than anyone else, brought about the rebranding of the empire into the British Commonwealth. His government introduced Canada's first old age pension and he is the prime minister who led Canada out of the Great Depression, as well as leading Canada into and out of the Second World War until being retired in 1948.

"Him? - er, now let's forget him! Besides every family has got one in the cupboard .."
Vicky [Victor Weisz], Daily Mirror, 26 Jun 1957

John Diefenbaker at Commonwealth Conference of 1957, with Harold Macmillan of Britain ; Jawaharlal Nehru of India ; Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana; Roy Welensky of Rhodesia, Robert Gordon Menzies of Australia, Chaudhri Muhammad Ali of Pakistan, Tom Macdonald of New Zealand; Eric Louw of South Afica; and M. W. H. de Silva of Ceylon. 

In 1956 Diefenbaker was elected leader of conservative party and led it to what many deemed to be impossible - a minority victory - in 1957. In 1958, he led the party to the largest majority in Canadian history. In 1962, his party won another minority government in spite of the vote splintering caused in Quebec by the Ralliement des Créditistes led by Réal Caouette. In the Suez crisis, Diefenbaker and his Conservatives opposed the American position against Britain and France, and strongly rejected then-prime minister Louis St. Laurent's likening the role of the two European allies in Suez to that of the Soviet Union in its recent crushing of the Hungarian uprising.

A staunch nationalist and a true believer in the fading Commonwealth, Dief saw advantage in continued close trade with the U.K. as a bulwark against Canadian domination by the rising U.S. superpower. Yet the world was changing. Britain was actively looking to enter the European Common Market, a move that would almost certainly strip Canada and the rest of the Commonwealth of trade preferences.

"Its Devastating!", Duncan MacPherson,
Kennedy hated Dief largely for his anti-nuclear stance. Lester Pearson was the President's choice. Kennedy gave the go-ahead to his friend and America's leading pollster, Lou Harris, to become the Liberal's secret campaign advisor in the 1962 election. Diefenbaker survived with a minority government. The plot to bring down Canada's government came to a head in January, 1963. On Jan.3, top U.S. Air Force General Lauris Norstad held an Ottawa press conference and criticized Canada's antinuclear stance. On Jan. 12, Pearson announced his new policy of supporting U.S. nuclear weapons in Canada. In protest, Pierre Trudeau called Pearson the "defrocked priest of peace" and refused to run for the Liberals.

Based on the advice of Willis Armstrong, head of the State Department's Canada Desk in Washington U.S. State Department issued a press release which called Diefenbaker a liar on nuclear issues. Fights broke out in Cabinet. Diefenbaker recalled Canada's ambassador from the U.S. On Feb. 5, Defense Minister Harkness announced his resignation and Pearson called for a non-confidence vote. Dief's minority government fell.

Tom Innes, Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau's complete focus is on repatriation of Canadian Constitution, Calgary Herald, October 9, 1980

During the 1980 referendum debate in Quebec, Pierre Trudeau had committed to bring Quebec into Canadian confederation. He saw the way to this end through the act of repatriating the Canadian Constitution form Great Britain with an amending formula and entrenched rights for all Canadians. After the Federal forces were victorious in the referendum, Trudeau quickly set to work to come up with an agreement among the Provincial Premiers which could be taken the British Parliament with the request that they pass an act giving recognizing Canada's complete sovereignty over all matters in Canada.

On April 17, 1982 after the Canada Act had been passed in the British Parliament, it was signed into law by the Queen at a ceremony on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. Canada finally had brought the constitution and the Charter of rights and Freedoms home.

Ronald Reagan and Brian Mulroney, Aislin (alias Terry Mosher), 1988,
It was the most controversial agreement of its kind in Canadian history. Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's vision of free trade with the U.S. read like a Harlequin romance: Canada played the neglected lover, U.S., the negligent partner. It signalled a new era in Canada-U.S. relationship. Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and President Ronald Reagan belted out a rendition of When Irish Eyes Are Smiling that would make their ancestors proud. The St. Patrick's Day performance capped a very cozy 24-hour meeting in Quebec City. The Shamrock Summit would go down in history for the number of handshakes, embraces and praises.

Ingrid Rice, “The Reform Party has finally shaken its image of being nothing but a bunch of white racists” “We now have racists of every colour” , April 29, 1997

There’s always been something phoney about Preston Manning’s populism. Remember how he was going to turn Stornoway, the official residence of the leader of the Opposition, “into a bingo hall”? Then, when he became leader of the Official Opposition he, er, moved in. Remember how his candidates — and newly elected MPs — railed against the “gold-plated” parliamentary pension plan? Then, with time, they all quietly opted in.

Manning spent much of his own long political career channeling popular resentment against government by painting a picture of venality, corruption, self-interestedness and indifference to the popular will among everyone but himself plying the political trade. It was Manning’s caucus that dressed up as a mariachi band to mock the Senate. It was his party that ran campaign ads crossing out the faces of francophone leaders of other parties. In other words, Manning did what he could to corrode belief in our political institutions. But when it came to the test — on Stornoway, on pensions, or on Wildrose — he and his followers often could be found slinking quietly away. Paul Adams, Preston Manning’s democratic deficit , ipolitics, Dec 31, 2014

Aislin (Terry Mosher), November 1976, and September 2012.
The separatist Parti Québécois won its first election in November 1976 and changed Quebec's political landscape forever. The cartoon on the left depicts a rumpled PQ leader René Lévesque standing beside a lean, lanky and defeated federalist Liberal premier Robert Bourassa,(the cartoon now sits in Montreal's McCord Museum of Canadian History). On the right Pauline Marois the Parti Québécois leader who claimed victory over the incumbent Liberal Party Leader Jean Charest is depicted with François Legault, the leader of the third party CAQ.
A two-year inquiry into Brian Mulroney’s dealings with German-Canadian arms lobbyist Karlheinz Schreiber has concluded that the former prime minister acted in an “inappropriate” way when he accepted large amounts of cash from Schreiber.The report by Justice Jeffrey Oliphant said Mulroney “failed to live up to the standard of conduct that he himself adopted in the 1985 ethics code.”

By Graeme MacKay, July 5, 2009,
Queen Elizabeth has appointed prime minister Jean Chrétien to the Order of Merit, and a line up of former prime ministers (John Turner, Kim Campbell, Brian Mulroney, Paul Martin and Joe Clark) wonder how Chrétien, a self-described "little guy from Shawinigan, always gets away with it."

The award, founded in 1902 by King Edward VII, is given to "individuals of exceptional distinction in the arts, learning, sciences and other areas such as public service," according to a news release from the press secretary of the Queen. The order is restricted to 24 members as well as additional foreign recipients.

After his editorial cartoon on Jan. 21st 2014,  Terry Mosher, the editorial cartoonist for the Montreal Gazette, who  used the pen name Aislin, came under fire for a drawing of Stephen Harper with a blue-and-white Israeli flag over his face that critics said was “incendiary” and came  close to employing age-old stereotypes of Jews who have the power to silence critics.

But Terry Mosher said these interpretations were far from what he intended, which was no more than a legitimate critique of Harper’s policies, ones he says diverge from Canada’s traditionally more “balanced” approach to the Middle East.

 “I was watching TV with him and [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu. It was just a simple thought that given Canada’s more balanced policy in the past, he’s gone overboard.”

The Ghost of President Nixon consoling Prime Minister Stephen Harper

Harper persistently maintained that he knew nothing about the $90,000 cheque that his right-hand man gave to Senator Mike Duffy. In a bitter speech in the Senate, Duffy tabled documents that showed a lawyer for the Conservative Party of Canada also paid his $13,560 legal bill as part of orchestrated effort to make the controversy over his living expenses go away.
"The reality is,that Mr. Duffy still has not paid a cent back to the taxpayers of Canada. He should be paying that money back. The fact that he hasn't, the fact that he shows absolutely no regret for his actions, and the fact that he has told untruths about his actions means that he should be removed from the public payroll ... On our side, there is one person responsible for this deception. That person is Mr. Wright.' — Prime Minister Stephen Harper
According to Toronto Star it was Harper's administration culture that was responsible for this scandal.
It’s the kind of culture where enemies and secrecy abound. It’s a culture that breeds devotion among Harper’s largely white, male, pin-stripe-adorned disciples — not so much to a prime minister, but to an all-powerful potentate, who must be protected, whatever the cost. It’s a culture that permits a destructive hubris to flourish like a drug-resistant virus until it can’t be halted by shopworn political or public relations tactics. This constellation of corrosive characteristics was, of course, the defining nature of Tricky Dick Nixon and his criminal, constitution-subverting co-conspirators in the Watergate affair.

Michael de Adder, The Hills Time

In July 2014 the RCMP charged Mike Duffy, a former television journalist who became a senator, with 31 counts of bribery, fraud and breach of trust in relation to his Senate expenses. The charges were related to living and travel expenses claimed, contracts awarded by his office and a deal in which he received $90,000 from the Prime Minister’s former chief of staff to reimburse the government for his controversial expenses. Wright resigned when his payment to Duffy came to light, but the scandal grew as Harper faced repeated questions in Parliament over what he knew about the affair. He initially defended Wright and Duffy, but then changed his approach and called for Duffy’s suspension and claimed that Wright had been fired. Although Harper came to office promising he would never name an un-elected Senator, he included Duffy along with 17 others as part of a mass appointment that gave him a Conservative majority in the Senate.

"Poloz's slave ship": Glob and Mail editorial cartoon by David Parkins.
Speaking to a House of Commons committee on November 2014, the Governor of the Bank of Canada, Stephen Poloz, suggested young Canadians and others struggling to find work should acquire more experience through unpaid internships or volunteering until the country's hobbled job market picks up.

One of Stephen Harper’s most remarkable achievements in politics has been to navigate his way from the nativist, turban-queasy, anti-immigration policies of Reform to those of a modern party, supporting immigration and wooing the ethnic vote. With his sidekick Jason Kenney scarfing perogies and papadums with equal enthusiasm, in 2011 Harper led the Conservatives to an even bigger victory among voters born abroad than he won among the general population.

Turbaned Sikhs, Lebanese Christians and brown-skinned Hispanics know full well — from looking south of the border, for starters — that when the mood turns ugly for Muslims, the racism that ensues doesn’t bother with fine distinctions. Visible minority voters are critical in many of the seats around Toronto and in the lower mainland of B.C. on which the next election may turn. (...) More dramatically, the Conservative MP and former Harper communications chief, John Williamson, embarrassed the party when he talked about unemployed white people being displaced by “brown” temporary foreign workers. Stupid. Of course. Not just because it sounds racist, but because at least some of the “brown people” who vote will use it to connect the dots between themselves and Harper’s campaign of fear. That’s why several Conservative MPs criticized Williamson rather than close ranks around him. [Paul Adams, iPOLITICS, Mar 10, 2015]

Cartoon by Bruce McKinnon at the Chronicle Herald, March 2015
Liberal leader Justin Trudeau has accused Prime Minister Stephen Harper of deliberately sowing fear and prejudice against Muslims in Canada. The charge came in a strongly worded speech Mr. Trudeau delivered in Toronto Monday night to highlight his views on the importance of liberty in Canadian society. “These are troubling times,” the Liberal leader told a gathering organized by the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. “Across Canada, and especially in my home province, Canadians are being encouraged by their government to be fearful of one another. “Fear is a dangerous thing. Once it is sanctioned by the state, there is no telling where it might lead. It is always a short path to walk from being suspicious of our fellow citizens to taking actions to restrict their liberty.”

Stephen Harper: master manipulator, By Nick Davies , The Guardian, 14 Feb 2018

In the 11 years since he became leader of the country’s Conservatives, the party has been fined for breaking electoral rules, and various members of Team Harper have been caught misleading parliament, gagging civil servants, subverting parliamentary committees, gagging scientists, harassing the supreme court, gagging diplomats, lying to the public, concealing evidence of potential crime, spying on opponents, bullying and smearing. Harper personally has earned himself the rare rebuke of being found to be in contempt of his parliament.

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau, Editorial cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday March 11, 2015

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals held onto power after a closely fought election on Monday but were reduced to a minority government that will need the support in Parliament of a smaller left-leaning party. Canada’s economy, however, has been on a general upswing in 2019. The Canadian dollar has been the best-performing G10 currency this year, rising more than 4% against its U.S. counterpart, as the economy added jobs at a robust pace and inflation stayed close to the Bank of Canada’s 2% target. 
Ahead of the vote, opinion polls showed a tight race between Trudeau and his main rival, Conservative leader Andrew Scheer. “Tonight we have put him on notice,” Scheer said in Regina, Saskatchewan, of Trudeau. “His leadership is damaged and his government will end soon and when that time comes, we will be ready and we will win. “We are the government in waiting,” added Scheer, 40, whose party won 122 seats.
Reuters - MON, OCT 21 2019


"The Trudeau government is the first one in the Western world to bluntly call Trump out for his fabrications and fractiousness. Instead of kissing the royal arse of this clown prince, the rest of the world would do well to follow Canada’s lead and start pushing back against the threats, lies, and institutional nihilism of this most dangerous head of state."(...)

Good on Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland for making the trip to Washington to denounce to U.S. lawmakers, face-to-face, Trump’s ill-considered and likely illegal tariffs on steel and aluminum. It was shrewd of the minister to meet with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, whose Republican chairman, Bob Corker, is leading congressional efforts to kill Trump’s tantrum tariffs. And it was downright brilliant of Freeland to call a spade a spade during her U.S. trip.

 Michael Harris, iPolitics .  Jun 14, 2018

 During a  news conference  in  June 2020, a reporter asked Trudeau: "You've been reluctant to comment about the words and actions of the U.S. president. But we do have now Donald Trump calling for military action against protesters. We saw protesters tear-gassed yesterday to make way for a presidential photo-op. I'd like to ask you what you think about that. And, if you don't want to comment, what message do you think you're sending?"

The Canadian Prime Minister paused before responding - as the cameras recorded his expressive silence, --  for 21 seconds -- which was quite ingenious. He looked down at his lectern, opened his mouth as if to speak - then stopped, shifted his weight and uttered a barely audible "um" ...

"We all watch in horror and consternation what's going on in the United States," he finally said. "It is a time to pull people together, but it is a time to listen."  

Spain After Franco

Spain’s royal accession faced its first dispute on May 2014, over plans to grant the outgoing king legal privileges against prosecution for paternity scandals. The Spanish government were examining how to change the law to ensure King Juan Carlos can be judged only before the Supreme Court after he abdicates. Paternity cases cannot be heard in the Supreme Court as they are civil matters, so the king will, in effect, be exempt from having to answer claims. He is facing suits from two people who say they are the fruit of extramarital affairs. The king has always denied being unfaithful to Queen Sofia, despite claims from a number of women that he had affairs.

Britain before and after Margaret Thatcher

By Low, 'The Manchester Guardian', May 15, 1953
Churchill is implying that the withdrawal of 80,000 British troops from the Suez Canal Zone will remove a critical buffer zone between Egypt and Israel that will lead to war

By Low, 'The Daily Herald', February 17, 1953
Neguib amiable greets Eden while asking Britain to evacuate the canal zone forthwith without conditions.

Decline and fall of the British Empire, By Cummings, 'The Daily Express', September 8, 1955 

By Cummings, 'The Daily Express', March 5, 1956

By Vicky, 'The Daily Mirror', August 13, 1956

By Vicky, 'The Daily Mirror', October 19, 1956 
Eden warns Israel that the British were prepared to take military action against Israel under the terms of the Anglo-Jordanian treaty.

by Illingworth, 'Punch', September 26, 1956
Depicted: John Foster Dulles, Anthony Eden and Guy Mollet

 'Head on a Plate' Sir Anthony Eden's resignation. By Illingworth, January 12, 1957

By Vicky, 'The Daily Mirror', February 1, 1957

By Cummings, 'The Daily Express', June 27, 1961
 Depicted: John F. Kennedy, Nikita Khruschev, Harold MacMillian and Abd al-Karim Kassem.

President Kennedy got a more ambiguous reception overseas than he did at home. Many cartoons played up his youth and inexperience. This one is by Vicky, the pen name of Victor Weisz. Weisz was the opposite of the gag-first political cartoonist. He was a passionate and driven man who wanted to use his cartoons to change the world. His left-leaning politics clashed with the editor of the News Chronicle in 1947, sending him first to the Daily Mirror and then the Evening Standard.

David Low, The "New Democratic Party", 1946
In 1946 Winston Churchill asked Macmillan to join a committee to look into reshaping the Conservative Party. On 3rd October, Macmillan published an article in the Daily Telegraph where he suggested that the name should be changed to the "New Democratic Party". In the article he called for the Liberal Party to join Conservatives in an anti-socialist alliance. He wrote in his diary that to obtain an alliance with the Liberals, it would be worthwhile "to offer proportional representation in the big cities in exchange."


John Profumo, the Secretary of State for War in the British government under Conservative Prime Minister Harold MacMillan began an affair with Christine Keeler, a London call girl in 1961. Keeler had been the lover of Yevgeny "Eugene" Ivanov, a senior naval attache at the Russian embassy in London. Profumo was forced to step down from his position on June 5, 1963. An official report was released in September 1963 and a month later Prime Minister MacMillan resigned claiming ill health.

On 3 December 1969, the British cartoonist, Michael Cummings, outlines the inflexibility of the stance taken by France's General Charles de Gaulle and his successor Georges Pompidou regarding the issue of the United Kingdom’s accession to the European Communities, despite efforts made by successive Prime Ministers, Harold Macmillan and Harold Wilson, to comply with France’s wishes.

Harold Wilson and Lyndon Johnson, On US entry into Vietnam War ,The New Statesman Magazine April 1965

Paul Rigby, " But, Monsieur, 'se are your Friends?" The Sun, 19th Oct. 1972

‘One less obstacle, but not the end of the road.' For the cartoonist Fritz Behrendt, a multitude of problems awaits the British Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, before the UK can accede to the European Communities, despite the exit of General de Gaulle from the political stage.  (12 June 1969)

The Heath Government was elected in June 1970 determined to take Britain into the E.E.C. The key question was whether the French would agree? Twice before, under De Gaulle, France had vetoed British applications. De Gaulle's successor, Georges Pompidou, was known to be more favourable, but a French "oui" could not be taken for granted. The key question, posed by Pompidou to Heath was; is Britain ready to make "a historic change in (its) attitude", a "fundamental choice" in favour of the European Community?

In the wake of the Treaty of Rome being signed in Parliament the cartoon cover by Glan Williams for the edition of October 23 1971, shows a minuscule Edward Heath handing over the British Isles on a platter to a cluster of historical figureheads including Ceasar, Emperor Nero, Kaiser Willhelm, Mussolini, Hitler, Richelieu and Napoleon.

 European Monetary System. Don’t make a fuss! If you can swallow Christmas pudding, you can swallow this!’ On 5 December 1978, French cartoonist Jacques Faizant illustrates how President Valéry Giscard d’Estaing (centre) and Chancellor Helmut Schmidt (on the left) are laying the foundations of a new European Monetary System. The two leaders also need to secure the support of British Prime Minister and Labour Party leader James Callaghan (on the right), since the EMS envisaged by France and Germany has not received unanimous support within the Labour Party.

Edward McLachlan, The SDP - pudding in danger - or - Carving up the votes, Mail on Sunday, 17 Apr 1983
This cartoon depicting Margaret Thatcher (Conservative)and Michael Foot (Labour) carving of Roy Jenkins (SDP) is based on James Gillray's cartoon The plumb-pudding in danger: - or - state epicures taking un petit souper' depicting William Pitt and Napoleon Bonaparte; published 26 February 1805. Michael Foot inherited the leadership at the most difficult time for the Labour party.Two things happened that made it impossible for him to win the 1983 general election. First, in 1981, the party came close to falling apart as the "gang of four" - Shirley Williams, Bill Rogers, David Owen and Roy Jenkins - walked out and formed the SDP in protest at his left-wing polices. Second the Falklands War, which made Margaret Thatcher hugely popular – before then she had been a very unpopular prime minister. Put together, it made it impossible for Foot to carry victory.

Stanley Franklin, Daily Mirror
On 19 January 1976 Thatcher made a scathing attack on the Soviet Union, declaring that “The Russians are bent on world dominance, and they are rapidly acquiring the means to become the most powerful imperial nation the world has seen...They put guns before butter...” The Soviet Defence Ministry newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda (“red star”) gave her the nickname "Iron Lady", and this was eagerly taken up by her supporters.

This cartoon was published in the Daily Mirror the day after Thatcher's longest-serving cabinet minister, Geoffrey Howe, delivered a scathing resignation speech, voicing his discontent over her refusal to better integrate the United Kingdom with European economies:

Trog [Wally Fawkes], Observer, 20 Mar 1988,
Thatcher retired from Parliament at the 1992 General Election, but she left a lasting legacy. This cartoon by Brookes shows her as an elderly and surprisingly masculine figure, rejoicing in the success of her offspring - the New Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Steve Bell on the revelation that Tony Blair thought Gordon Brown 'mad, bad and dangerous'
Steve Bell’s career at The Guardian started in 1981. He was born in London in 1951, he studied art at Leeds University and worked for magazines including the New Statesman and Time Out before joining The Guardian. His job gives him the chance to comment through humour on some of the biggest events of the past 25 years and mercilessly rib the people that made history. But altogether he was handed such ridiculous looking characters as Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev to work with, it was not always easy to produce a daily strip. He recalls struggling with Neil Kinnock, the Labour leader from 1983 until 1992. He said: "Kinnock was very hard to draw, because all there was to him was the fact he was basically ginger. I always used to go big on the freckles, just to add some definition. It wasn’t very fair, he wasn’t that freckly but that was all I could think of for those nine long years.

Peter Brookes, The Times, May 25, 2010
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne's £6.2 billion of budget cuts included banning first-class travel for government departments, and scrapping chauffeur-driven cars for specific ministers.

Peter Brookes on Donald Trump’s state visit to the UK

"His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh has decided that he will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. In taking this decision, the duke has the full support of the queen," Buckingham Palace said in a statement on May 2017.

Gary Barkers, David Cameron, Rupert Murdoch and Paul Stephenson, snug as a bug political cartoon, The Guardian

Rupert Murdoch's once-commanding influence in British politics dwindled to a new low on July 12th 2012, when all three major parties in Parliament joined in support of a sharp rebuke to his media empire and a parliamentary committee said it would call him, along with two other top executives, to testify publicly next week about the phone hacking scandal enveloping his media empire. The following day, Murdoch's News Corporation announced that it is withdrawing its bid for BSkyB.

Cameron's judgment, and that of the chancellor, George Osborne, in appointing the former editor of the News of the World Andy Coulson as their director of communications looked increasingly inexplicable. Cameron was being accused of an improperly contractual relationship with Neil Wallis, a former News of the World deputy editor, as his meetings with News International executives in a year exceeded those with all other news organisations put together. Not a single figure from the BBC was granted an audience.
Implying that he could not impart operational information to Cameron since he was too compromised with the chief suspects, Sir Paul Stephenson announced he was stepping down as the UK's most senior police officer. Just hours before his resignation, Deputy Prime Minister Clegg, told the BBC that a growing public perception of police corruption was deeply concerning. Stephenson dated his relationship to Wallis back to 2006. From October 2009 to September 2010, Wallis's part-time work at the Met involved strategic communications, advising the commissioner, as the force said there was no need to reopen the investigation into phone hacking at the News of the World.

Libor, the London inter-bank lending rate, is considered to be one of the most crucial interest rates in finance, upon which trillions of financial contracts rest, and the exposure of its rigging has shocked many beyond the world of finance. Every day a group of leading banks submit rates for 10 currencies and 15 lengths of loan ranging from overnight to 12 months. Since the rates submitted are estimates not actual transactions it's relatively easy to submit false figures

At the height of the financial crisis in late 2007, many banks stopped lending to each other over concerns about their financial health with some banks submitting much higher rates than others. Barclays was one of those submitting much higher rates, attracting some media attention. This prompted comment that Barclays was in trouble. Following much internal debate and a controversial conversation with a Bank of England official, Barclays began to submit much lower rates. The Libor scandal has further undermined trust in banks. BBC

Economist David Blanchflower argued there is no longer a credible candidate among top UK bankers to take over as the next governor of the Bank of England in the wake of recent banking scandals. Professor Blanchflower, who served on the Bank's monetary policy committee between 2006 and 2009, believed the escalating Libor crisis meant Sir Mervyn King's replacement could not come from the banking sector. An internal appointment was also out of the question, he argued, with Bank staff such as deputy governor Paul Tucker facing criticism over their actions. He proved to be right.

According to Time magazine: "From the South Sea bubble in 1720 to the 1990s implosions of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International and of Barings Bank and through a gallery of rogue traders and dodgy deals that have posed existential threats to financial institutions on several continents during the past quarter of a century, the common factor is not that they were caused by foreigners in London. London itself, especially its compact financial district known as the City, is implicated. ... Individuals and institutions may end up on trial. Yet a swelling sentiment would like to see a bigger entity in the dock: London. It's no longer enough to explain the City's supremacy as a global incubator for scandals by citing its global supremacy as a center for international finance, the world's most potent competitor to New York City, a place where transactions covering literally trillions of dollars, pounds and euros are executed every day."

The Spanish banking crisis, Chris Riddell, The Observer

In 2012, Spain asked euro region governments for a bailout worth as much as 100 billion euros ($125 billion) to rescue its banking system, thus becoming the biggest euro economy up to then to seek international aid. In this cartoon UK prime minister David Cameron tells German Chancellor Angela Merkel: "We must do something Angela!". Merkel replies, "We?".

The Chancellor's New Clothes, 27 November, 2012
George Osborne stunned the markets by announcing that Mark Carney, the Canadian central banker, will replace Sir Mervyn King as the next Governor of the Bank of England. Carney is "the outstanding central banker of his generation with unparalleled expertise in financial regulation" Osborne said." He has got what it takes to help bring families and businesses through these incredibly challenging economic responsibility was to get the best for Britain, and with Mark Carney we've got that."
Canada came through the financial crisis of 2007-8 relatively unscathed, thus boosting Carney's reputation. Under his governorship, the Bank of Canada cut interest rates to record lows and supplied emergency liquidity to the banking system to prevent a collapse.

Ben Jennings, The Guardian, Friday 13 September 2013
"The Bank is acutely aware of the risk of unsustainable credit and house price growth and will be monitoring it closely," Mark Crney said in Nottingham in August 2013. "The important thing to recognise is that we now have tools other than interest rates that can be used to contain risks in the property and financial sectors. We are now fully prepared to deploy them if that were needed." The Bank could, he said, use its newer tools to recommend that banks and building societies "restrict the terms on which new credit is provided, or even to raise capital requirements on mortgage or other types of lending". This would allow the Bank to avoid raising wider interest rates across the economy even as it acted to put the brakes on specific areas.

Joe Weisenthal, Business Insider of Financial Post on August 2913, asked Did Mark Carney make the best-timed job switch ever?
Mark Carney has been in office for barely over a month, and all the economic data is looking bright. The history books will show a remarkable rebound right as he assumed office. Brilliant timing.

November 2013, Mark Carney was forced to defend his forward guidance against criticism that the policy is ineffective.The Governor of the Bank of England told lawmakers that he and fellow policymakers were wary about official measures of investment in Britain. "We're not putting full weight on that data and it has to be said that it doesn't entirely feel right that investment is, as measured, falling at a time when we see continued strengthening investment intention,(...) I was much more comfortable with the data in Canada," Carney said.

Bank of England chief Carney, the 'unreliable boyfriend' has left savers in a perilous situation
The Bank of England governor acted last month with what some saw as undue haste by halving interest rates to just 0.25 per cent. Now, building societies are following suit. Mr Carney insisted the emergency cut would save Britain from recession and soaring unemployment — just as our post-Brexit economy began firing on all cylinders. The dapper Canadian, dubbed the “Unreliable Boyfriend” by City cynics after repeatedly getting his forecasts wrong, infamously caused a Brexit storm with overblown warnings of economic doom. Many think he should have been sacked for stoking the very economic uncertainty he claimed an Out vote would cause. Now his impetuous rate cut has made life tougher for a generation brought up to believe thrift was good.-- Trevor Kavanagh, Sun Columnist 5th September 2016,

Scotland voted decisively to stay in the United Kingdom by about 55% to 45%.
Prime minster Cameron promised draft legislation by the end of January 2015 on handing more powers over tax, spending and welfare to Scotland, which should had come into effect after the May 2015 general election. According to him:
"Just as Scotland will vote separately in the Scottish Parliament on their issues, of tax, spending and welfare, so too England, as well as Wales and Northern Ireland should be able to vote on these issues and all this must take place in tandem with, and at the same pace as the settlement for Scotland."

Joep Bertrams, Dutch political cartoonist, 2016
 With less than ten weeks before British referendum on the EU on 23 June, and with undecided voters still in huge numbers, David Cameron is having a hard time persuading his fellow citizens to vote "In", as the Panama papers leaks revealed British Prime minister and his family took advantage of an offshore fund owned by his late father.

Brexit Referendum 

The UK was to vote on whether to remain in the EU on Thursday 23 June, 2016. Prime Minister David Cameron made his historic announcement in Downing Street after briefing the cabinet. He said he would be campaigning to remain in a reformed EU - and described the vote as one of the biggest decisions "in our lifetimes".Mr Cameron claimed his EU reform deal will give Britain "special status" within the bloc - tackling concerns over migrants getting "something for nothing" from the benefit system and exempting the country from the EU drive for "ever-closer union". But critics argued it did nothing to tackle high levels of immigration or take back powers from Brussels.

So, Europeans stay at home ... and we stay in Europe.
British fine taste: - As usual the special sausage!

Slovakia, June 26, 2016, Martin Stove
The United Kingdom's break with the European Union is an unprecedented "political earthquake" that sweeps away decades of diplomatic harmony and unravels a post-World War II dream of a unified voice to guarantee peace, economic prosperity and security.

After 43 years in European coalitions, the U.K. is parachuting out of a 28-nation bloc that is riven with divisions over the refugee crisis, weighed down with the Greek debt drama and relatively powerless in the face of Russian aggression in Ukraine. The EU is also weathering populist, far-right revolts among large swaths of its 500 million citizens in France, Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland.( Kim Hjelmgaard, USA TODAY, June 26, 2016)

Slovakia, June 30, 2016, Marian Kamensky
The economic fallout from Britain’s vote to leave the European Union was swift and stark. The pound cratered to its lowest level in three decades. When the London Stock Exchange opened the next morning, its leading share index immediately fell by more than 8 percent, the largest single-day drop since the 2008 financial crisis.

The world is looking at Britain and asking: What on Earth just happened? Those who run Britain are asking the same question. Never has there been a greater coalition of the establishment than that assembled by Prime Minister David Cameron for his referendum campaign to keep the U.K. in the European Union. There was almost every Westminster party leader, most of their troops and almost every trade union and employers’ federation. There were retired spy chiefs, historians, football clubs, national treasures like Stephen Hawking and divinities like Keira Knightley. And some global glamour too: President Barack Obama flew to London to do his bit, and Goldman Sachs opened its checkbook. And none of it worked. The opinion polls barely moved over the course of the campaign, and 52% of Britons voted to leave the EU. That slender majority was probably the biggest slap in the face ever delivered to the British establishment in the history of universal suffrage. [FRASER NELSON, The WSJ June 24, 2016, ]

The Brexit vote will fuel concerns in Westminster that the future of the United Kingdom is now in serious doubt. The SNP warned during the campaign that if - as has happened - the UK overall voted to leave the EU but Scots voted to remain, Scotland would be taken out of the EU "against its will" and this could be the trigger for another independence vote. Senior SNP figures have said the vote shows Scotland sees its future in the EU and the issue of its own constitutional status could be revisited. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said the issue is now back "on the table" while her predecessor Alex Salmond has gone further, saying a second vote could take place within the next two and a half years, depending on how long it takes the UK to depart. (...) There are also concerns in Northern Ireland about the implications of the Brexit vote for its relationship with the Republic of Ireland. Remain campaigners warned that a Brexit vote could herald the return of "hard" border controls between the North and South. The Irish government has said the future of the border is one of a number of priority issues in its contingency planning.[BBC]

Political cartoonist Peter Brookes (UK, inducted in 1988) created On Osborne’s Scary Brexit Forecast for The Times, published on 20 April 2016.

Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap U.K. general election in the hope of strengthening her hand in negotiations to take Britain out of the European Union.
But that gamble has backfired: Rather than handing May a landslide victory, the election has left no party with a clear majority, throwing into doubt who will govern Britain.

Negotiators from the U.K. and EU reached a draft Brexit deal in 11th-hour talks, although there were serious doubts that the agreement will be approved by U.K. lawmakers back in Westminster. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker called the deal “fair and balanced.” Johnson faced a Saturday deadline by law to request an extension to the current Brexit departure date of Oct. 31, 2019 had no deal been reached. However, Juncker has implied that EU leaders won’t allow an extension, even if Johnson asks. This sets up a complicated and difficult day for the U.K. Parliament on Saturday. There are doubts a deal will be approved in Westminster, with opposition parties already criticizing it.

The UK officially left the European Union on Friday  31 of January 2020, at 23:00 GMT after 47 years of membership, and more than three years after it voted to do so in a referendum.

The UK was aiming to sign a permanent free trade agreement with the EU, along the lines of the one the EU has with Canada, by the end of the transition period in December, 2020. But European leaders had warned that the UK faces a tough battle to get a deal by that deadline.

Britain’s post-Brexit supply chain crisis could “cancel Christmas” and continue to cause food shortages well into 2022, industry leaders have warned. - Independent . August 2021

 After Jeremy Hunt,  her new chancellor buried Liz Truss’s economic strategy with a series of humiliating U-turns after he took over from the sacked Kwasi Kwarteng, who wanted to reduce taxes on the rich and subsidize the poor for increased costs of energy due to the war in Ukraine; Truss announced on  20 October 2022 that she was quitting No 10 after a calamitous 45 days in office. She was the shortest-serving UK prime minister ever, having presided over what has been one of the most politically turbulent and economically damaging periods in modern history. 

Rishi Sunak has become the new UK Prime Minister, following Liz Truss’s dramatic resignation on 20 October 2022. 
The former Chancellor faced questions about his own tax affairs and his commitment to the UK, after it emerged he had held onto US green card status well into his tenure as the head of the Treasury. His personal affairs also came in for scrutiny after it was revealed his wife Akshata Murty not only had links to Russia, but was also shielding her vast wealth from the UK taxman by holding non dom status.

France and Germany After WWII

Jean Eiffel,"Acceptez vous de prendre pour mari et légitime époux?", L’Express, septembre 1958
De Gaulle returned to power in 1958 thanks to the crisis of May 13. The crisis stemmed from the institutional weakness of the Fourth Republic, concentrating too much power in the parliament at the expense of the executive branch. As a result there were 24 governments in 12 years since the end of WWII. Meanwhile, the French army faced a daunting crisis due to the uprising of French Algeria. De Gaulle agreed to become President in exchange for constitutional reform

Fritz Behrendt, Algemeen Handelsblad, June 1962,
The German cartoonist reflects on the the oversized ego of General de Gaulle, President of the French Republic.

Michael Cummings (1919-*), 'Anything to declare, gentlemen?', L'Aurore, July 1961.
Paris customs officers Konrad Adenauer, German Chancellor, and Charles de Gaulle, French President, ask Harold Macmillan, British Prime Minister who tries to smuggle the Commonwealth into the common market despite the warning: 'Common market: imports of special favours for the Commonwealth and agricultural protectionism forbidden.'

The cartoonist, Spinga, legitimately asks if Bonapartism is not one of the characteristics of French politics. Obviously, there are differences between Gaullism and Bonapartism. De Gaulle did not attack the civil liberty (assaults on the freedom of the press had begun under the Fourth Republic during the war in Algeria). De Gaulle never introduced aggressive militarist strategy ( in fact, his most resolute opponents were senior army officers). Furthermore, De Gaulle never aimed at establishing an empire. Nevertheless, some elements of Bonapartism may be detected in the regime that he established in 1962. The Gaullists are supporters of a strong sovereign state. They like a planned economy and a centralized authoritarian state led by a charismatic and powerful leader such as Bonaparte or De Gaulle.

General de Gaulle’s European policy, Ekö, 7 September 1960
Charles de Gaulle’s road to Europe: not together, but side by side.’ Following a press conference held on 5 September 1960, General de Gaulle is accused of rejecting supranationality as a means of unifying Europe; instead, he develops his idea of a Europe of states. To the right of the French President, German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer.

William Elias Papas, The Guardian, May 1967,
Charles de Gaulle's action plan towards the United Kingdom’s application for accession to the European Communities.

‘Rêveries. Savage! …’ 13 November 1964,
cartoonist Padry draws an ironic  cartoon of the strained relations between the new Federal Chancellor Ludwig Erhard, who has a highly Atlanticist view and favours direct relations with the United States, and French President Charles de Gaulle, a fervent defender of national sovereignty. The period of good relations and complicity between Adenauer and de Gaulle (sat together at the piano) seems to be over. The atmosphere has become much more chilly between Paris and Bonn. On the left, Chancellor Ludwig Erhard, smoking a cigar, is disturbing the good relations that once existed between the Franco-German duo with his jukebox (‘made in USA’)

JAK, Raymond Jackson (1927 - 1997), Evening Standard, Dec. 1969
"Well, for a start, Harold, can you do this?" French President Georges Pompidou and Prime Minister Harold Wilson

Lodge, Nevile Sidney, 1918-1989; Evening post (Newspaper. 1865-2002),1973
'Pardon, Monsieur The President, but as he was leaving, the New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister scribbled on your front door!,' A disgruntled Deputy PM has been to visit Pompidou to protest nuclear weapons testing in the Pacific without success. To show his frustration, the visitor has changed the name on the door to President Bombido and the presidential aide is telling the president about the graffiti.

Fritz Behrendt, ‘A teaspoonful a day,’ 1974.k
The French President, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, and the German Chancellor, Helmut Schmidt's recommended dose of European Economic Community (EEC) medicine for the British Prime Minister, Harold Wilson's ailment.

‘Ludwig, why are you opposed to this union?", Hans Geisen, 1964

In January 1963, Konrad Adenauer signed the Franco-German friendship treaty with Charles de Gaulle in Paris. The "mystical communion" between the two old Catholics was strong, and both men shared the same political belief: Europe was no stronger than the bonds that linked France and Germany. It was a far-reaching treaty, unique for both countries in the kind of political machinery it set up.

However, a few months later Adenauer and his "German Gaullists" were gone, and Chancellor Ludwig Erhard, an avowed Atlanticist, replaced Adenauer as party leader. He understood that France could not provide the protection the U.S. could, and noted the relative importance of America in the world economy, thus believed it would be best to stick with the Atlanticist approach. The Bundestag had added a preamble to the treaty that de Gaulle told Willy Brandt was a "personal offense," and the General, wearily, would remark that treaties, like young girls and roses, faded all too quickly. Erhard’s emphasis on the primacy of economics over concern for security and national interests first reflects a basic tenet of Atlanticist thought: the west is linked not just by common values and interests, but also by close economic ties that link the interests of countries in a way that makes a pure nationalist read on policy impossible.

"After so many years ..." Hans Geisen, Swiss, 1980

President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing and Chancellor Helmut Schmidt pursuit of a policy of rapprochement between France and the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) is represented as the growing relationship of the nascent collaboration of their predecessors, the German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and French President Charles de Gaulle.

Mirko Szewczuk, "Better holding Acheson's hand when Stalin is on the roof!", 1949

Dean Acheson was the first Secretary of State who visited the Federal Republic. He was Truman's Secretary of State, and he came here at the request of President Truman. It was extremely important and valuable for us that it was Dean Acheson, whom I esteem highly, who came at that time and the visit strengthened our morale profoundly. Adenauer
Dean Acheson visited Adenauer shortly after the founding of the Federal Republic in November 1949. American policy aimed at integration of the Federal Republic in the Western world. Gradually will Adenauer revitalize the potentials of the Federal Republic. However, the cartoonist suggests that the East German Prime Minister Otto Grotewohl and the President of the Republic Wilhelm Pieck, acting as Soviet leader Joseph Stalin's guard dogs, are the real threat. Otto Grotewohl began taking an active part in the revived Social Democratic Party of Germany after the defeat of the fascist regime in Germany. He fought for the unity of the German workers’ movement as a result of which the Communist Party and the Social Democratic Party of Germany were united as the Socialist United Party in the eastern part of Germany. At the unification congress in April 1946, Grotewohl was elected to the Central Board of the Socialist United Party, and he and Wilhelm Pieck became its chairmen. After the proclamation of the German Democratic Republic on Oct. 7, 1949, he became the prime minister of the GDR. Wilhelm Pieck who had moved to Soviet controlled Germany after the Second World War, was elected President of the newly-established German Democratic Republic in 1949. He was part of the 1919 Spartakist rebellion, along with Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknechton, which had been crushed and most of its leaders were arrested and executed, but he was released unharmed, and remained active in the German Communist Party.

The formation of the European Common Market (composed of France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg) in 1957 brought unprecedented prosperity to those countries. By 1962, 11 additional countries in Western Europe had applied to join. The Soviet Union and its East European satellites held aloof, but Valtman suggests that they may be viewing the development with considerable concern. Here Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev (1894-1971) watches construction while his little dog (who resembles East German leader Walter Ulbricht (1893-1973)) strains at the leash.

Plantu,‘I’ve even included a catalytic converter, just for you!’ , April 1985
The French President, François Mitterrand tries to sweeten the deal for the German Chancellor Helmut Kohl as part of his plan for the Eureka (European Research Coordination Agency) project, coordinating scientific and technological research at Community level .

Walter Hanel, "Welcome", 1993
French President François Mitterrand and the German Chancellor Helmut Kohl are standing at the door to welcome the accession of Austria, Finland and Sweden to the European Community, but the quality of life inside the house is not much different.

Steve Bell, Guardian, June 2004
Jacques Chirac gently decried George Bush's plan to reform Arab states with free elections, independent media and improved legal systems. Democracy was not a commodity that could be exported. It had to be an Arab model of democracy not a western one.

Carlo Schneider, 2005
On 4 March, President Jacques Chirac announced that France will hold its referendum on the European Constitution on 29 May 2005. Chirac’s statement came less than two weeks after the Spanish people had voted overwhelmingly in favour of the Constitution, albeit with a low turnout. Just a few days before the announcement of the French date, the Dutch government had decided to hold its consultative referendum on 1 June. Against the background of the Constitutional Treaty’s rejection in the referendums in France and the Netherlands in spring 2005, the referendum euphoria changed into a referendum phobia. All member states except of Ireland where a referendum was legally required decided to ratify the Treaty of Lisbon via the parliamentary procedure only.

Christo Komarnitski, Apologies to Delacroix, Sarkozy and Carla Bruni.

Carla Bruni- Sarkozy's wife claimed to journalist Nathalie Saint-Cricq that "Nous sommes des gens modestes". This invited ridicule in her bid to recast her husband Nicolas a “man of the people". According to Daily Telegraph reporter Henry Samuel; "The comment from the heiress to a tyre fortune who earned almost £5 million per year at the height of her catwalk fame has turned Mrs Bruni-Sarkozy into a laughing stock on the internet. One commentator on Le Monde’s website describing the claim as coming from “Marie Antoinette in Sarkoland.””.

Sarkozy's expulsion of Roma gypsies was a dark episode in the history of France. According to Libération: “France stands accused”. It stated that "the degraded image of Sarkozy’s France isn’t just an image. It’s a reality as reported day after day in the foreign press.”

Dave Brown, The Independent 2012. Nicolas Sarkozy tried to exploit a Toulouse shootings in March to boost his chances of re-election and keep the focus on security.

Hagen, Verdens Gang - Oslo, Norway, 2012.

Sarkozy as the train bearer for the Miss France, who's no other than the far-right candidate Marine le Pen